Trucking accidents often cause severe injury and damage. If you have been in a trucking accident, you’ll want to find who is liable for the incident so you may pursue them in court or reach a settlement to compensate for any injury or damage incurred. In the case of a trucking accident caused by defective brakes, there are several potentially liable parties, which can make filing a truck accident claim more challenging.
Knowing the facts about truck defects and accidents and hiring a knowledgeable attorney will help get you the results you deserve. If you have been in a trucking accident, make sure you take the necessary steps after the incident, including speaking with an accident attorney. If you believe the accident was a result of defective brakes, learn more about what caused the issue and who is liable in the case.
What Causes Defective Brakes and Accidents?
If components of commercial trucks are defective, it can impact whether or not a truck can brake properly. A variety of mechanical issues or truck defects can cause an accident, such as:
- Poorly aligned brakes
- Brake failure
- Worn brakes
- Brake defects
Commercial trucks are heavy vehicles — often exceeding 26,000 pounds — that require significant stopping power, and any defect with a truck’s brakes can potentially lead to disaster.
Who Is to Blame for a Trucking Accident Caused by Defective Brakes?
Defective brakes account for 29.4% of commercial large truck collisions, according to the Department of Transportation. Even if you are relatively certain brake issues caused your trucking collision, finding the right liable parties and pursuing them successfully in court or in a settlement can be a challenge.
When brake failures cause trucking collisions, there are multiple possible liable parties, including:
- The driver: If the driver failed to maintain brakes properly or failed to report issues with the brakes, they may be held liable. They may also be held liable if they did not brake correctly. In addition, some drivers de-power the front brakes to reduce maintenance costs. When drivers rely only on the rear brakes, they can cause a trucking accident and may be held liable.
- The loaders: The company that loads the truck may be held liable if they exceeded maximum loading amounts, overweighting the truck and causing brake failure by exceeding safe weight limits.
- The individuals responsible for maintaining brakes: Sometimes, truck carriers will hire a maintenance crew or will take their trucks to a service for brake maintenance. These parties can be held liable if they did not correctly maintain the brakes. However, quite often, it is the owner-operator or driver who is responsible for maintenance.
- The brake manufacturer: In some cases involving a trucking accident, defective brakes are caused by manufacturing or design flaws. Brake manufacturers are also legally obligated to meet federal safety guidelines when it comes to truck brakes. If they fail to achieve these minimum standards or fail to produce safe products, brake manufacturers may be held liable.
How Is the Liable Party Determined in a Truck Accident Claim?
Because determining liability is a challenge, the investigation after a truck accident claim usually involves various investigations to uncover who is at fault. The investigation often involves a thorough:
- Examination of the brakes.
- Review of expert testimony from engineers.
- Review of maintenance records.
- Review of driver logbooks and other information.
The investigation process will hopefully uncover who is liable for the truck accident. When you want to file a truck accident claim, be sure to consult a reliable accident attorney.
Let KBG Injury Law Help You After a Trucking Collision
After the unfortunate event of a truck accident, you need people on your side who you can trust. At KBG Injury Law, our experienced team is ready to help you get the compensation you deserve. With KBG, you are not just another client. We will take your case personally and give you the individual attention you deserve.
Whether you have questions about filing a truck accident claim or the process of determining a liable party, our knowledgeable team is ready to help. If you would like to file a claim after your trucking collision, contact KBG Injury Law for a free consultation.