18-Wheeler Mechanical Failure

Blown tires, failing brakes, and nonworking lights would be scary on any vehicle. When the mechanical failure occurs on a tractor-trailer, the result is often catastrophic. For this reason, motor carrier companies have a duty to regularly inspect their trucks and maintain their fleet in good repair. If a truck company’s failure to do so caused your crash, Berenson Injury Law holds it liable for your injuries and pursues your maximum possible damages.

Why our in-depth knowledge and experience is crucial

The mechanics of a tractor-trailer are complicated and new technology constantly changes trucks’ construction and operations. Determining whether mechanical failure played a part in a crash is, therefore, a challenging process.

Fort Worth attorney Bill Berenson has close to 40 years of experience of investigating and proving 18-wheeler accident liability. Because motor vehicle accident recovery is our sole practice area, we have developed an extensive base of knowledge about tractor-trailer mechanics and defects that help us in our investigations. We remain up-to-date on the newest truck technology that can affect how trucks run and their potential for failure. Our in-depth knowledge is been instrumental in our thorough evidence-gathering investigations and analysis.

By developing a strong case strategy for mechanical failure, we are able to hold the trucking company directly liable for your injuries. We can pursue the trucking company’s assets should your damages exceed the driver’s policy limit.

Federal inspection, repair, and maintenance regulations

Part 396 of the Code of Federal Regulations imposes a duty on trucking companies and commercial drivers to inspect, repair, and maintain their vehicles. The law’s provision titled “Unsafe Operation Forbidden” states clearly that “a motor vehicle shall not be operated in such a condition as to likely cause an accident or a breakdown of the vehicle.”

The statute specifically requires inspections of at least these parts:

  • • Service brake and parking brake
  • • Trailer brake connections
  • • Steering mechanism
  • • Headlights, taillights, and turn signals
  • • Reflectors and other lights
  • • Tires, wheels, and rims
  • • Horn
  • • Windshield wipers
  • • Rearview mirrors and side mirrors
  • • Coupling devices
  • • Emergency equipment

The statute requires the driver to create a report of deficiencies and defects which the motor carrier must keep. In addition, any problems noted on the report must be repaired before the driver is allowed to operate the vehicle. Based upon these legal duties, the company and driver may be held liable for any mechanical failures that contributed to a crash.

Investigation into vehicle failure

Time is of the essence after a crash to preserve crucial evidence of mechanical failure. Motor vehicle carriers know they can be held liable for violating the law to upkeep their fleet. To avoid detection, these companies often dismantle, destroy, or repair wrecked trucks, which may destroys important evidence as to the cause of the accident.

Mr. Berenson can immediately obtains an emergency order that halts any tampering with the truck until we have the opportunity to inspect. We conduct a full inspection in collaboration with accident reconstruction experts who can identify potential mechanical issues that might have been contributing factors.

In addition, we subpoena inspection and maintenance records and review them for errors, omissions, and potential fraud. We may delve deeper to access emails and other correspondences that can prove the company was aware of the issues or failed to conduct adequate inspections before the crash. We then analyze our mechanical findings in light of other facts to reconstruct the accident and prove that mechanical failure was the cause.

Hold the motor carrier and driver liable for injuries you sustained because of truck malfunction

Both the motor carrier and the driver may be held liable if a truck malfunction caused your crash. Fort Worth law truck accident attorney Bill Berenson helps you pursue all possible options for recovery of your rightful damages. Discuss your claim in detail at your free case evaluation. Berenson Injury Law handles your claim under our contingency fee plan, so you run no financial risks in pursuing your rights.

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