When Brake Failure Causes Truck Accidents

Driver versus Company Negligence

One of the many causes of commercial truck accidents is brake failure, which is why individuals other than the truck driver, or his/her trucking company, can also be held responsible for a crash. Sometimes the brake manufacturer, the person responsible for brake maintenance, or the person who loaded the truck can also be held accountable in a court of law.

Weigh Stations

The US Department of Transportation requires commercial truck drivers to conduct pre- and post-trip inspections of their vehicles to identify any safety defects or maintenance concerns. In addition, the brake manufacturers are required to follow certain federal mandates regarding the safety of braking systems in trucks.

The weight of a truck comes into play in terms of the trucks' handling abilities so trucks must be able to do the following:

  • Have a braking force determined by a percentage of the weight of the truck
  • Decelerate to a complete stop from 20 miles per hour at a rate determined by the size and weight of the vehicle
  • Meet the requirements laid out for automatic brake adjustment systems

Drivers or truck companies can be liable for brake failures when they fail to properly maintain the brakes. If an inspection of the vehicle reveals that the brakes did not meet these standards, then the manufacturer of the brakes can also be liable for the accident.

Log Books and Record Keeping for Commercial Vehicles

Companies are required by federal law to keep thorough records to show that all maintenance (including work done on brakes) is done according to schedule. Trucking companies are also responsible for ensuring that trucks are loaded properly before every trip. If the truckload is distributed unevenly or if the truck is overloaded, the brakes could overheat and break down because of the amount of stress on them.

If you have any questions about taking legal action after a serious truck accident, or how you can be properly compensated, arrange a free consultation with one of our Indiana injury attorneys by calling Tabor Law Firm at (317) 689-0077 or learn more on our website, including what personal injury lawyers know about truck accidents that can save you money.