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Although commercial trucks are considerably different from cars, their owners and operators are also required to maintain adequate insurance to cover property damage and injuries to other people in the event of an accident. In Oklahoma, this is governed by the Motor Carrier Safety and Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, which also sets weight restrictions on trucks operating on state roads.

The insurance limits for trucks are determined by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission. Truck companies can maintain their own insurance as long as it complies with state safety regulations and has enough funding to cover liability. The commission also sets separate trucking regulations for trucks and other vehicles transporting hazardous materials. All commercial truck operators must submit proof of insurance to the commission to ensure that they are in full compliance with all state regulations.

The act also permits the state’s Department of Public Safety to fix the number of hours a person can drive a truck in a single stretch as well as the amount of rest or number of off-duty hours a driver must have before getting behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle. A driver who is traveling just within the state of Oklahoma and who is not carrying hazardous materials can drive for as many as 12 hours. This standard is in keeping with federal regulations set by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

These laws are meant to ensure the safe movement of trucks on Oklahoma roads, so violations are taken seriously and can mean financial penalties. For instance, an overloaded truck can be difficult to control even for an experienced driver; this creates a risk not only for the driver but also for other drivers sharing the road. Further, even the most minor truck accidents can result in significant damages, which makes insurance coverage an absolute must have.

Source: OSCN.net, “Oklahoma statutes citationized“, Accessed Jan. 2, 2015