In most passenger car accidents, the driver is responsible for maintaining the vehicle. The driver ensures mechanical safety. A truck accident is a bit different, and a little more complicated. Different people have responsibilities regarding maintaining a commercial truck to standards of safety. It’s not a one-person job.
Therefore, one of the first things you should do to establish liability in a truck accident is to determine who the defendant is in the lawsuit with the help of truck accident attorneys. Mechanical problems are found to be a factor in about five percent of accidents. Some trucking companies do not make safety a priority. Let’s look at some of the mechanical things that could go wrong and contribute to a truck accident.
Brakes and Brake Lights
One of the most common and deadliest mechanical problems a truck can have is faulty brakes. If a truck’s brakes go out, and it’s built up too much momentum, the results can be disastrous. When a truck’s brake lights are out, especially at night, a deadly situation can arise if another car were to crash into the back of the truck.
Nothing can stop a truck when its steering goes out. Due to the speed and the weight of large trucks, they canoften lose control and collisions typically result in severe injuries and death.
Tires Blowing Out or Falling Off
One strategy that trucking companies will use to save money is to put retread tires instead of new tires on their trucks. Sometimes, tires aren’t installed properly, and when they fall off, the truck is completely uncontrollable. Then, there is the possibility that the truck has a random blowout. This could happen to anyone at any time. The thing is, an investigation must take place when an accident occurs due to a tire incident. Was the trucking company at fault?
Headlights and Turn Signals Not Working
When you’re sharing the road at night with a “big rig,”you must be able to see the truck to avoid an accident. Headlights must be in good working order before the truck is sent out on the road. The same is true for turn signal indicators. Turning in a truck requires additional space and time. If you cannot see the warning indicators on the truck, you’re likely to have an accident.
Truck Trailer Lights Malfunctioning
Long trailers are required to have lights running the entire length of the trailer. This is so you will have visibility of the trailer when it is crossing in front of you. You will be able to avoid a collision with the truck if you can see these lights.
This is a huge hazard that you don’t hear much about but is quite common. If the load in the trailer shifts or comes loose, several scenarios are possible. It can come out of the back of the truck and into traffic, causing a chain reaction accident. Sometimes, when the load shifts, the trailer becomes unstable and the driver is unable to control the truck. This is a very dangerous situation as well.
Trucking companies are required to maintain and store maintenance records on their trucks. They are also required to inspect and repair their vehicles at regular intervals. They must keep records on these inspections and repairs.
For more information, speak to a truck accident lawyer today.