July 16, 2019

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Poorly Maintained Tractor-Trailers Causing Accidents

Truck Accident Law Firms

Tractor-trailer trucks are responsible for transporting countless important goods across the country daily, including grains, gas, chemicals, building materials, liquids, consumer products, and more. Weighing 40,000 lbs. or more and traversing thousands of miles, these trucks’ systems and parts are vulnerable to mechanical stress and rapid wear and tear. Without proper maintenance, tractor-trailers are far more likely to cause serious truck accidents.

Truck Maintenance Laws

Commercial and privately owned tractor-trailers alike have to abide by legal standards regarding care and maintenance. Each state has local laws on inspection, repair, and maintenance, and the U.S. government’s statutes are set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Here are a few of the topics addressed by these laws:

  • Interstate carrier motor noise emission standards
  • Parts and accessories for safe operation
  • Service maintenance records
  • Safety testing at FMCSA-approved motor carrier safety service centers
  • Records and safety certificates
  • Logging and filing of maintenance, service, and mechanical problems
  • Falsification, alteration, and reproduction of records

While mechanics are responsible for making sure the vehicles are road-ready before long hauls, truck drivers are charged with supervising the vehicle throughout the trip. Full safety checks should be performed daily, with routine tire, load, and other checks performed every two hours.

Proving Poor Truck Maintenance

Failure to ensure a tractor-trailer is in top operating condition can mean truck accident fatalities and severe injuries. Upon investigation of such accidents, accident reconstructionists, engineers, and other consultants will be looking for signs of negligent maintenance. Reasons for poor maintenance may be traced to other indirect forms of negligence, like failure to supervise or unrealistic schedules and driver fatigue.

Failure to perform necessary maintenance or make safety updates can lead to brake failure, steering malfunctions, shifting complications, tire blowouts, and other dangerous conditions. In many cases, inadequate care over time creates progressive dangers that culminate in a violent malfunction while en route. Part of proving poor truck maintenance includes working backwards to identify all the parties who oversee truck operation, including trucking supervisors, drivers, and maintenance workers.

The skilled tractor trailer accident attorneys listed in this directory can help you search for evidence of poor truck maintenance. If you want to learn more about maintenance requirements and find out if shoddy upkeep was a factor in your truck accident, hiring a team of truck accident lawyers is sure to produce the answers you’re looking for.

If you or a member of your family has been seriously hurt in a tractor-trailer accident, please click here to find a truck accident law firm near you.