A jackknife truck accident can quickly become catastrophic when the trailer swings to the side—right into other lanes of traffic and vehicles. The trailer often forms an angle with the cab that resembles a jackknife—which is where the name came from—or an “L.” Often, a multi-vehicle pile-up can follow, or the truck can roll over onto smaller passenger vehicles, crushing the people inside. While victims may be entitled to compensation for their injuries, these claims are often more complicated due to the multiple parties often involved and the seriousness of the injuries.
What Are the Main Causes of Jackknife Accidents?
Truck jackknife wrecks often occur on wet, slick roads when the truck’s wheels lock up. The sudden change of speed, such as when a truck driver slams on the brakes, can cause this to happen. Truck drivers should know how to handle their trucks properly to avoid jackknife danger. Unfortunately, many drivers lack the training or decide to ignore safe driving practices. Here are common negligent driver errors that contribute to jackknifing:
- Speeding. A speeding truck takes even longer to slow down and stop than if the truck was traveling at the posted speed limit. The truck can jackknife when the truck driver makes the mistake of slamming on his brakes, especially on wet roads.
- Curves. Truckers who fail to drive slower on curves or do not deaccelerate before entering the curve can cause their trailer to sway and swing out into traffic.
- Bad weather. A truck can jackknife when a driver fails to take weather conditions, such as ice, snow, and rain, into account when driving.
- Maintenance. Lack of brake and tire maintenance on a truck can cause a truck driver to lose control and cause a jackknife wreck. In some cases, the trucking company may have purposely adjusted the truck brakes to reduce wear and tear, with the result being that it is more difficult for the truck driver to drive safely and control the truck even when he is trying to do so.
What Injuries Could You Suffer in a Jackknife Accident?
Victims of jackknife wrecks can suffer disabling injuries and even death. Common injuries caused by these accidents include:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back and spinal injuries
- Internal injuries, such as internal bleeding and organ damage
Contact Our Office Today
If you or a family member were injured in a jackknife or other truck accident, let the experienced truck accident attorneys at Tavss Fletcher help you hold the negligent truck driver and trucking company responsible. Call our office today to schedule your free consultation.