Brake issues blamed for two fiery trucking accidents

Trucking accidents can cause catastrophic damage and liability can involve multiple parties.

Trucking accidents are often much more catastrophic than those involving typical passenger vehicles. The simple rules of physics provide the reason; these trucks are generally thousands of pounds heavier than passenger vehicles. This means that these massive vehicles are much more difficult to stop and have much more momentum than other cars on the road. Add in the presence of flammable cargo and a crash involving a commercial truck colliding with a passenger vehicle can lead to major damage.

The severity of the damage that can result was highlighted in a recent series of crashes involving commercial trucks. The first involved a truck that collided with two passenger vehicles, pushing the passenger vehicles under the trailer of another truck. The trailer that was struck contained various forms of fertilizer, highly flammable material, and immediately caught fire. The accident claimed three lives.

A second accident involved a commercial truck that hit several vehicles and another truck. It appears that the truck did not apply his brakes in time. This supposition is supported by the presence of brake marks on the highway that begin just prior to the site of the collision. This accident took five lives.

Are there laws that are designed to reduce the risk of these accidents?

In short, the answer is yes. There are various laws and regulations that are put in place to help reduce the risk of these types of accidents. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, for example, specifically addresses brakes. These regulations include everything from the type of braking systems to the expected maintenance.

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Administration is also known to conduct inspection blitzes, often unannounced, to check for compliance. A failure to pass these inspections can result in an out-of-service designation.

Who is liable for these trucking accidents?

Liability for trucking accidents can be a bit more complex than a typical car accident. The question of liability does not stop with the two drivers. The trucking companies, employers and manufacturer or shipper may also have some level of responsibility in the accident.

Due to the complex nature of these accidents, it is wise for anyone that is injured to seek legal counsel. Medical expenses alone can be astronomical. Victims often also experience lost wages as a result of the accident due to missed work. An attorney can help build a case around the details of your accident, better ensuring those who are responsible for the accident are held accountable.