What You Should Know about a Jackknife Truck Accident
The term “jackknife accident” will refer to an accident in which a vehicle pulling a trailer loses control and comes to resemble a folding pocketknife. The trailer comes to rest alongside or even behind the hitch where the vehicle and object connect. Depending on different factors in each accident, the trailer can come to rest where several lanes of traffic are blocked. The trailer can hit other vehicles nearby. For those who are involved in this type of accident, it’s important to get the services of a jackknife truck accident lawyer.
Why These Accidents Happen
These accidents can occur for a number of different reasons.
Improper Brake Maintenance: If a truck brakes are not properly maintained or adjusted, then the trailer axles can lock before the tractor axles.
High Speeds: A massive truck takes a lot of force to stop, especially if it is traveling over 55 mph. The faster a truck is going, the more likely a driver will have to slam the brakes in order to stop quickly. The act of slamming on the brakes can lead to a braking imbalance that causes an accident.
Sharp Curves: Slight curves aren’t usually a problem for most truck drivers, but evasive maneuvers, along with sharp curves and high speed, can be enough for a driver to lose control.
Bad Weather and Road Conditions: A loss of traction can cause the weight to shift, which can lead to the trailer and cab sliding. An accident can occur form even the smallest skids.
Driver Inexperience: This is one of the preventable causes of trucking accidents. Driver fatigue, along with inexperience, can be the cause of many accidents. Trucking companies will often encourage drivers to exceed hours of service despite safety risks and don’t provide proper training.
What to Do after an Accident
You should first assess yourself for any injuries. Big rigs can cause more serious injuries than a regular accident. All parties should be cooperating with the police. Drivers of passenger cars should report the accident to their insurance companies. It’s important to take photos of any damage and collect witness information. After getting the proper medical treatment, it’s important to discuss with a jackknife truck accident lawyer. Many people will assume that the truck driver is liable for the accident. However, liability can depend on different factors. Passenger car drivers can be at fault if they violated traffic laws or were engaged in distracted driving. Trucking companies need to properly maintain vehicles. If there are defective parts that caused the accident, then the manufacturer may be liable. It could be possible for multiple parties to be liable for the accident, which is why the services of a lawyer can help.