Mechanical Failures and Defects in Trucks
Commercial trucks are typically driven hundreds of miles a day, several days a week. Therefore, it is essential that commercial trucks are in good repair and that their brakes, engines, and other components work properly. Unfortunately, however, mechanical failures and defects in trucks are common, and they frequently cause cataclysmic accidents. If you were injured in an accident caused by a commercial truck, it is prudent to speak to an attorney. At Cook Law Group, our Gainesville truck accident lawyers are committed to helping people harmed in accidents arising out of mechanical failures and defects in trucks seek justice for their harm. We have the skills and resources needed to help you pursue the full extent of damages recoverable.Examples of Mechanical Failures and Defects That Cause Truck Accidents
Commercial trucks have many components, and if one component ceases to work properly, it can cause an accident. For example, if a truck’s headlights stop working, the truck driver may not be able to safely navigate the truck, and other drivers may not be aware of the truck until it is too late to avoid a collision. Similarly, if a truck’s transmission or steering components fail, the driver is unlikely to be able to control the vehicle. Additionally, tire defects can cause blowouts and rollover accidents, brake failures can result in the loss of the ability to stop a truck, and a failure of the equipment that couples a truck to a trailer can cause the trailer to detach while the truck is traveling at a high speed.
Our lawyers have handled several cases where a wheel had come off a truck and caused serious injury or death to others. Our firm recently recovered $4.25 million when a wheel broke off a tractor-trailer and was left lying in the highway. In investigating such cases, frequently a tire shop will have some responsibility for negligent maintenance in addition to the trucking company.Potential Claims Following a Truck Accident Caused by a Mechanical Failure or Defect
When a truck accident occurs due to a mechanical failure or defect in the truck, multiple parties may be responsible for the accident. The truck driver, the company that made the component of the truck that failed, and if the truck driver does not own the truck, the truck owner may potentially be liable for any harm caused by the accident.
Regarding the truck driver and truck owner, a plaintiff seeking damages for harm sustained in an accident will usually need to prove negligence. In other words, the plaintiff and their attorney must show a duty owed by the defendant, a breach of the duty, and harm that was caused by the breach. While in most instances the duty owed is the duty to act with reasonable care, in cases involving truck accidents, the duty owed is often a duty imposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Regulations. Specifically, the Regulations impose duties on truck drivers to conduct inspections before and after every trip and to document the findings of their inspections to prevent mechanical failures and defects from going unnoticed. The Regulations also require truck owners to inspect, maintain, and repair all the parts of a truck on a regular basis to ensure that the truck is in safe operating condition. When truck drivers or owners fail to abide by the duties imposed by the regulations, it likely constitutes negligence.
A plaintiff may also be able to pursue negligence claims against an entity that manufactured a defective part of a commercial truck if the plaintiff can show that the manufacturer failed to use appropriate care in making the part or make claims against the mechanic who last worked on the truck. Generally, however, a plaintiff will pursue a strict liability claim against a manufacturer, which requires the plaintiff to show that the manufacturer created a defective part and that the defect caused the plaintiff’s harm, but this does not require a showing of negligence.Discuss Your Accident with a Knowledgeable Gainesville Attorney
When a truck driver loses the ability to control a truck due to a mechanical failure or defect, it can result in an accident that leads to serious harm. If you were injured in an accident with a commercial truck, you should meet with an attorney to discuss your potential claims and the damages that you may be owed. The truck accident lawyers at Cook Law Group are well-equipped to help you prove that the parties that caused your harm should be held liable, and we can advocate aggressively on your behalf. We can be reached at our Gainesville office via the form online or at 678-928-3899 to schedule a meeting. We represent people in lawsuits arising out of mechanical failures and defects in trucks in cities such as Gainesville, Albany, Columbus, Savannah, Macon, Augusta, Athens, and Valdosta.