Truck Accidents Caused by Mechanical Failures
According to the National Highway Safety Administration, the number one cause of truck accidents in this country is driver error, including drowsy driving and distracted driving. The second leading cause of truck accidents is mechanical failure, which is concerning since many of these accidents can be prevented by making sure that the truck is properly maintained and repaired when necessary. Unfortunately, some truck companies focus more on the revenue they generate from keeping a truck on the road rather than taking it out of commission for routine maintenance.
Examples of Mechanical Failures
The following examples of mechanical failure can cause serious truck accidents:
- Brake Failures: This is the most common type of mechanical failure in large trucks. Regular brake maintenance is extremely important since it can take a large truck up to 40 percent longer to come to a complete stop compared to a passenger vehicle. Brake failures can be caused by:
– Faulty brake lines
– Improper inspection
– Infrequent or no inspection
– Leaking brake fluid
– Malfunction in the antilock brake system
– Not enough brake fluid
– Thinning brake pads
– Worn discs
- Faulty Windshield Wipers: When the windshield wipers are not working properly, the truck driver may not be able to see the road ahead. This can be extremely dangerous, particularly during inclement weather.
- Hitch Malfunction: Trailers are connected to the cab via hitches. If the hitch is not working properly, the trailer can break loose. This can cause devastating accidents, particularly if the truck was traveling at a high speed.
- Malfunctioning Headlights or Taillights: If the truck’s lights are not working as they should, it can seriously impact the safety of the truck driver and the safety of motorists in the vicinity. Headlights, taillights, turn signals, and the lights on the side of the truck should always be working properly. Some broken lights can be fixed, while others will need to be replaced.
- Rear-Guard Failure: This helps prevent devastating underride accidents. If a rear-guard is broken, and a vehicle crashes into the truck, it can have devastating, often fatal consequences.
- Steering or Suspensions Failure: This can impact a truck driver’s ability to steer the truck. In some cases, heavy, or improperly loaded cargo can cause these problems. Other times, poor driving patterns can result in steering problems.
- Tire Blowouts: These can cause catastrophic accidents if it causes the truck driver to lose control of the vehicle, particularly if it occurs on a busy highway and the truck was travelling at a high speed. Tires must be inspected, maintained, and replaced if necessary. Truck companies must also be aware of any tire recalls. Tires that are thinning or bald can also make it difficult to steer or operate.
- Transmission Failure: The most common problem associated with transmission problems is overloading trucks with too much cargo. The transmission must be checked regularly, and fluids replaced when necessary.
There are several parties who may be held liable for truck accidents that are caused by mechanical failures, including the truck driver, the trucking company, the truck manufacturer, or the manufacturer of the parts or components. An experienced truck accident lawyer will investigate the details of the accident, including the mechanical failure that caused the accident, and recommend the best legal course of action.
Virginia Beach Truck Accident Lawyers Seek Compensation for Truck Accident Victims
If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a truck accident that was caused by mechanical failure, you are urged to contact the Virginia Beach truck accident lawyers. At East Coast Trials Lawyers, we understand how devastating these accidents can be and we will work tirelessly to secure the maximum financial compensation you deserve for your injuries. To schedule an initial, confidential consultation, call us today at 757-352-2237 or contact us online. Located in Virginia Beach, Virginia, we serve clients from Chesapeake, Eastern Shores, Hampton, Newport News, Portsmouth, and Suffolk, Virginia, as well as North Carolina and nationwide.