Lancaster Brake Failure Truck Accidents
Commercial trucks pose a serious threat to South Carolina motorists. Their size alone makes them dangerous. But trucks are also are on the road for long stretches of time, making them more likely to experience mechanical problems like brake failure. If an accident occurs, the consequences can be deadly.
It takes a lot for a tractor-trailer to experience complete brake failure. The braking system in a commercial truck is designed with safeguards to provide at least some protection if a brake problem arises. If a truck’s brakes malfunction and a crash occurs, it’s likely that someone else can be held liable for the wreck.
If you were hurt in a truck accident caused by faulty brakes, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries and losses. The experienced South Carolina truck accident attorney at David Blackwell Law can help.
Our legal team provides personalized and comprehensive legal representation to injured people in Indian Land, Lancaster, Fort Mill, Rock Hill, and the surrounding communities.
Call or contact us today for a free consultation.
Common Causes of Truck Brake Failure
Roughly 30 percent of truck accidents in the United States are caused by brake failure, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
By law, trucks are required to undergo regular inspections and maintenance to ensure that all parts are in working order. Yet the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) found nearly 450,000 brake violations during inspections of commercial trucks in a recent year.
Some of the most common causes of brake problems in 18-wheelers include:
- Poor maintenance: Imbalanced brakes, brakes with mismatched components, leaks and other oversights can cause failures if a truck’s braking system is not regularly maintained. Nearly 181,000 of the recent FMCSA violations were for brakes that were out of adjustment, one of the common causes of jackknife accidents.
- Design defect: Truck parts manufacturers are required to design and sell products that meet safety standards. A single design flaw could mean the difference between a safe braking system and one that could turn deadly.
- Untrained or undertrained drivers: Commercial vehicle drivers should be trained on proper braking techniques. For example, truck drivers who tap the brakes too much on a steep downhill can cause brakes to overheat or even catch fire.
- Overloaded trucks: Trucks require longer stopping distances, and one with overloaded cargo needs even more time to come to a full stop. Too much weight wears the brakes down more quickly, potentially leading to failure.
The risk of catastrophic injuries and death is very high when a truck’s brakes give out. These types of injuries usually result in astronomical medical expenses and lifelong hardships for victims and their family members.
If this has happened to you, reach out to the lawyers at David Blackwell Law. We will hold all liable parties accountable for their actions by pursuing maximum compensation on your behalf.
Who Can Be Held Liable For A Truck’s Brake Failure?
There are several possible defendants in a truck accident case. These include:
- The truck’s owner: Sometimes truck owners try to save money by failing to maintain their rigs. If poorly maintained brakes result in a collision and someone is hurt, the owner may face a negligence claim.
- The truck company: Negligent hiring practices that put untrained drivers behind the wheel and cause an operator-related brake failure is one of many reasons why a truck company may be liable for a crash.
- The brake parts manufacturer: Auto parts designers and manufacturers are expected to turn out products that don’t fail or break under everyday conditions.
- Mechanics and repair shops: Even trucks that are maintained on a regular schedule could have unsafe brakes if the mechanics who service them fail to diagnose and fix the problems. These technicians may be held partly liable if a tractor-trailer’s brakes fail.
- The truck driver: Truckers have specific duties on the road, including inspecting their vehicles before and during a trip. In addition, they are responsible for driving safely by not speeding, tailgating or engaging in other dangerous driving behaviors.
- The cargo loader: FMCSA guidelines outline how to load a truck properly to avoid overstressing the brake systems. Failure to follow these directions could place liability on the freight loader or shipper.
When a truck’s brakes fail, there’s often a lot of finger pointing. Each party will blame the other for the negligence that led to the head-on truck accident. A knowledgeable truck accident attorney will be able to conduct a detailed investigation to determine who should be held at fault. Sometimes, more than one party is to blame.
What Our South Carolina Truck Accident Lawyers Can Do
Healing after a truck accident can take months or even years. Many victims who suffer catastrophic injuries face an uncertain future and no promise of a full recovery. Making matters even more stressful is the concern about how to make ends meet given all of these new and unfair expenses. That’s where David Blackwell Law can help.
Our skilled truck accident lawyer will perform a thorough investigation of your case to determine what happened and who is responsible for the commercial truck’s brake failure. Then we’ll collect the medical records and other evidence necessary to build a solid claim for compensation for you.
In South Carolina, accident victims can receive compensation for losses such as:
- Past, current and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Lost earning ability
- Pain and suffering
- Lost enjoyment of life
- Punitive damages (to punish the negligent party for particularly reckless conduct)
The good news is that most of our legal team’s work can be done without much disruption in your life. Our no-nonsense attorney will take over all communications with insurance companies and other lawyers so that you can focus on the most important thing — getting healthy again.
Free Consultations With No Obligation
At David Blackwell Law, we believe that every accident victim deserves to learn their legal rights regardless of their ability to pay. That’s why we offer free consultations to accident victims in South Carolina.
In addition, our firm takes cases on a contingency fee basis. That means that you don’t pay any legal fees unless we obtain a verdict or settlement for you.
There’s nothing to lose. Call or contact us today to arrange your free consultation.