How Improper Truck Maintenance Increases the Likelihood of an Accident
The potential injuries can be devastating in accidents involving a passenger vehicle and a commercial truck. The significant size difference between the car and the truck can increase the likelihood of severe injuries and extensive property damage. There are many causes of commercial truck accidents.
Unfortunately, most truck accidents are caused by negligence and could have been prevented. One common cause of preventable truck accidents involves improper maintenance of trust. When trucking companies try to save money by cutting corners and failing to maintain their fleet, innocent victims can suffer catastrophic injuries or even death.Examples of Improper Maintenance of a Large Truck
The owners and drivers of large trucks must maintain and inspect their vehicles properly. How does improper truck maintenance contribute to the likelihood of a truck accident? Here are some of the main examples of negligent truck maintenance:
- Failing to properly maintain the truck’s brakes, causing them to fail and result in a collision
- Defective couplings on commercial trucks that are not replaced, resulting in tractor and trailer separation
- Failing to properly maintain the truck’s tires, resulting in tires shredding and blowing out
- Improper installation of the commercial truck’s mirrors resulted in significant blindspots and made it more difficult to see smaller vehicles on the road
- Failing to maintain the taillights of the truck properly resulted in the taillights being broken
- An improper inspection of the truck fails to show that the truck is missing proper reflective take, making it more difficult for other drivers to see the truck and avoid a collision
Each of these maintenance and inspection failures can lead to commercial truck accidents. If such a collision occurs, the trucking company and the driver may be liable for the resulting property damage and injuries. The victims involved in these accidents may be entitled to compensation for their past and future medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.Federal Laws Requiring Trucking Companies to Maintain Their Vehicles
There are many regulations that trucking companies are required to follow when it comes to maintaining and inspecting commercial vehicles. The following regulations apply to vehicles owned by a company and any vehicles leased for 30 consecutive days or more. Specifically, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) includes, but is not limited to:
- Regularly inspecting, maintaining, and repairing the vehicle
- Inspecting and verifying parts and accessories to ensure safe operation
- Keeping accurate and detailed maintenance records that can be produced on demand
Truck drivers have a legal obligation to monitor the condition of the vehicle on the road, an obligation that includes the following:
- Making pre-trip inspections to detect possible defects or issues that need repair or maintenance
- Checking the cargo and the vehicle at least one time during the first 50 miles traveled
- Rechecking the vehicle and cargo after driving for three hours, driving 150 miles, or at duty status changes
- Writing an inspection report at the end of every driving shift
To recover compensation for your injuries, you will need to prove that one or more party is at fault for causing the truck accident. Truck accidents may have multiple liable parties, such as the driver, trucking company, and cargo company. It is important to note that trucking companies can be held liable by injury victims in North Carolina. Proving liability involves gathering evidence proving that the at-fault party or parties failed to use reasonable care under the circumstances to prevent injuries to another.
Commercial truck accident claims are highly complicated because there could be multiple liable parties, and proving the claim can be challenging. Commercial insurance adjusters frequently gather evidence immediately after the accident, putting injury victims at a disadvantage. When you hire an attorney immediately after the accident, your attorney can level the playing field by gathering evidence and managing all communication between you and the insurance company. The attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, are prepared to represent your interests and fight for your right to compensation at all stages of your claim.Discuss Your Case With a Skilled Personal Injury Attorney
If you have been injured in a truck accident caused by negligent truck maintenance, the attorneys from Arnold & Smith, PLLC, are prepared to fight for you. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical injuries, property damage, and pain and suffering. We have a proven track record of recovering millions of dollars in compensation for truck accident victims. Contact the Charlotte attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, to schedule a free case evaluation.