Trucking companies are responsible for ensuring the trucks in their fleet are regularly maintained and that any needed repairs are made promptly. Faulty equipment can lead to a truck accident that leaves people seriously injured.
Preventing accidents is the goal of Brake Safety Week, an annual campaign from the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) designed to identify commercial vehicles with faulty brake systems. Next month, from August 21 through August 27, inspectors will conduct announced and unannounced inspections throughout North America.
“Poorly maintained brake systems can reduce the braking capacity and stopping distance of large trucks and motorcoaches, which poses a serious risk to driver and public safety,” said CVSA President John Broers. “In those split-second emergency situations, the proper functionality of the brake systems on large commercial motor vehicles is crucial.”
Dangerous vehicles are taken off of the road.
Last year, inspectors conducted 35,764 brake system inspections and identified 4,295 vehicles with problems, placing roughly 12% of commercial vehicles they inspected out of service.
This year, inspectors will pay special attention to brake hosing and tubing. Inspectors also check for loose or cracked parts, proper air pressure, non-manufactured holes, and broken springs. Inspectors will also ensure warning devices are functioning.
The annual event is part of CVSA’s Operation Airbrake campaign in partnership with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, and Mexico’s National Guard and Ministry of Communications and Transportation.
Large trucks have a greater stopping distance than cars. For example, a fully loaded commercial truck traveling at 65 mph needs about 600 feet to come to a complete stop. That’s assuming the brakes are fully functional. If brakes are not working properly, the risk of a crash increases.
When brakes fail, a crash follows.
Different types of accidents that can be caused by brake failure include:
- Rear-end accidents – The truck cannot stop in time and collides with the vehicle in front of it.
- T-Bone collisions – A truck can’t stop at an intersection and crashes into a vehicle coming from another direction.
- Jackknife accidents – The wheels lock up, and as the truck begins to skid, the trailer swings out, forming a jackknife shape.
- Rollover accidents – The wheels on one side lift off the road, and the entire trick rolls over.
The damage can be devastating when a large commercial truck hits a passenger vehicle. The lives of victims can be changed in seconds. Victims suffer serious injuries that require extensive medical treatment and leave them with a permanent disability.
If you’ve been injured, talk to an experienced truck accident attorney.
Trucking companies need to be held accountable when their failure to maintain trucks properly results in an accident leading to injury. But recovering financial compensation can be a lengthy and complicated process. Indeed, trucking companies and insurance carriers will aggressively fight against claims because they know a lot of money is at stake.
Attorney Jeff Weinstein has been helping the injured in Henderson County and East Texas for more than 30 years. He knows how to investigate trucking companies to get the facts about what happened. He knows insurance companies’ tactics to limit your compensation and is not afraid to fight back to get the results you need and deserve.
If you’ve been hurt in a truck accident, Jeff is ready to help. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.