Truck Accidents Caused by Brake Failure

Commercial truck accidents can cause devastating injuries, including brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, internal organ damage, and even death. Due to the massive size and heavy weight of commercial trucks, the truck's brakes are a crucial safety feature. When a collision occurs because of brake failure, it could result from poor maintenance, a defective component, or both.

When the brakes fail to work properly on a commercial vehicle, victims have a right to pursue compensation from the party or parties whose negligence caused the accident. The trucking company, the truck driver, the parts manufacturer, the mechanic, or a combination of multiple parties may be liable for the victim’s economic and non-economic damages.

Defective Brakes Can Cause Commercial Truck Accidents

Large commercial trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, and they need fully operational brakes and a truck driver who knows how to use them safely to protect other motorists. When or skimp on conducting regular maintenance, catastrophic accidents can occur. Although truck brake manufacturers are heavily regulated to ensure their products are safe and reliable, defective brakes can and do occur.

Brakes must provide a minimum breaking force. They also are required to decelerate the truck to stop at a specific minimum rate and meet other specific performance standards. Brakes are considered defective products when they fail to meet these safety standards. Product designers and manufacturers are legally obligated to use reasonable care to keep consumers safe when designing and manufacturing products. Whether the brakes were defectively designed or a problem during manufacturing caused them to be defective, the negligent designer, manufacturer, or retailers can be held liable by victims.

Negligent Brake Maintenance Can Cause Truck Accidents

Improper maintenance is one of the most common causes of accidents caused by defective brakes. Commercial truck braking systems contain numerous components end need to be assembled properly. They also need to be regularly serviced by mechanics with experience servicing commercial trucks.

Unfortunately, many truck owners need to pay more attention to properly maintaining their breaks in violation of federal law. Truck drivers must keep a detailed log of all of the inspections and maintenance on their trucks. If this log contains discrepancies or is incomplete, the truck owner or the company responsible for the truck maintenance can be held liable when an accident occurs. Some of the most dangerous types of problems that can arise from a lack of proper maintenance of a commercial truck’s brakes include the following:

  • Overheated brakes
  • Poorly adjusted
  • Worn brake components
  • Incorrect air pressure
Brake Fade

Inexperienced truck drivers can increase the likelihood of an accident due to brake failure. For example, when brakes get too hot, they do not work effectively. One truck drivers overuse their brakes. They can cause brake fade. Brake drums are designed to function correctly at temperatures up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, but when an experienced or negligent truck driver overuses them, the temperature can increase to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result, the brake shoes must move farther to create the friction needed to slow the traffic down. Poorly adjusted brakes, worn brake pads, aggressive driving, overloaded vehicles, and more can cause brake fade.

Accidents Resulting From Brake Failure

Commercial vehicles have air brakes that need to have sealed lines. A leak can result in brake failure. Poorly maintained or defective truck brakes can increase stopping distances. They can also prevent the truck driver from stopping the truck in time to avoid a collision. Additionally, when the truck's brakes are uneven, the truck may jackknife or overturns because one side stops faster than the other. If you have been seriously injured in a truck accident caused by poorly maintained brakes or defective brakes, it is crucial that you reach out to an attorney as soon as possible.

Discuss Your Case with a Charlotte Truck Accident Attorney

Trucking companies are notorious for trying to save money by cutting corners regarding the maintenance of their vehicles. Even if it means endangering innocent victims on the road, they may try to cut costs by not fixing break problems to save some money. You need an aggressive attorney if you or your loved one has been injured in a commercial truck accident caused by brake failure.

The insurance company will do everything possible to prevent you from recovering a fair settlement amount that covers your current and future medical expenses. The trial-ready attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, are prepared to fight for your rights. Contact Arnold & Smith, PLLC, today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.

Client Reviews
Arnold & Smith was great. They are always on time for your case, they really know what they are talking about. They are very good about giving you updates on your case. I highly recommend everyone to use Arnold & Smith as your attorney they will make sure you get the best result possible for your case. By far the best attorney in the area. Austin
Resonable expectations were set and the results far exceeded them. I was well informed, prepared and supported by Matt and his team. They provided comfort and confidence, as well as a great outcome. I can't possibly describe how grateful I truly am for what they have done for me. Matt was recommended to be by another trusted individual and I believe that was a blessing. Anthony
I can't say enough great things about Matthew Arnold and his team. I had a very complicated, high-conflict case which took a lot of time and effort on everyone's part, and I feel like my case was given the time and attention it required. Matt Arnold is a great attorney, and I would go as far as saying one of the best in Charlotte, if not the best. Bree is also amazing. Amber