Many trucks weigh between 10 and 20 tons and are driven hundreds of miles each day at high speeds on busy highways. As a result, it is vital that the brakes on 18-wheelers and other trucks are maintained in proper working order. When a truck lacks adequate braking ability, the driver will not be able to stop properly, which may lead to a tragic accident that causes significant injuries. If you or someone you love sustained injuries in an accident caused by a lack of braking ability, it is wise to speak with an attorney regarding your options for seeking compensation for your harm. The Manchester truck accident lawyers at Stephen Law Group will zealously advocate on your behalf to help you pursue the full amount of compensation recoverable for your damages.Duty to Maintain Braking Ability
Drivers who operate 18-wheelers and other trucks and the companies that employ them must comply with duties imposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Regulations to ensure that the trucks have sufficient braking ability. Drivers must conduct inspections of their trucks before and after each trip and must draft a written post-trip inspection report at the end of each day. Trucks must also undergo yearly inspections by a qualified brake inspector. Trucks must possess adequate braking ability to meet the stopping distance standards of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which means that they must be able to stop within a specified time.Recovering Damages Following an Accident Caused by Insufficient Braking Ability
When the driver of an 18-wheeler or another truck is unable to stop his or her truck, it is usually due to an issue with the truck’s brakes. In other words, the brakes may be worn out or out of adjustment, or they may lack adequate air pressure. When inadequate braking ability causes a truck crash, multiple parties may potentially be responsible for any damages that the accident caused. In many instances, more than one party will ultimately be deemed at fault.
If the accident was caused by a failure to comply with safety regulations, anyone injured in the accident will typically seek to prove negligence. Under New Hampshire law, a plaintiff alleging that he or she is owed compensation due to a defendant’s negligence must show that he or she was owed a duty of care by the defendant, but the defendant breached the duty, which caused the plaintiff to suffer harm. In cases arising out of inadequate braking ability, evidence that the driver or trucking company neglected to conduct appropriate inspections, or failed to address any issues noted during the inspections, can be used to help establish that the driver or company breached the duty of care.
If the brakes on an 18-wheeler or another truck failed suddenly without any warning, but the truck driver and the company that owns the truck conducted the required inspections and maintenance, the brakes may have been defective. As a result, a plaintiff seeking damages may be able to pursue a product liability claim against the company that manufactured the brakes.
A plaintiff who ultimately establishes that another party is liable for causing a truck accident generally may be awarded the cost of any medical treatment for injuries caused by the accident, out-of-pocket costs, and compensation for any lost earnings caused by his or her injuries. He or she may also be able to recover damages for the emotional distress, suffering, and pain caused by the accident.Discuss Your Options with a Manchester Attorney
It is critical for 18-wheelers and other trucks to have adequate braking ability. If you were involved in an accident caused by inadequate braking ability, the personal injury lawyers at Stephen Law Group possess the skills and experience needed to help you seek the best legal result available under the facts of your case. We represent people in lawsuits arising out of truck accidents in Manchester, as well as in other cities in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. You can contact us at 877-663-1007 or via our form online to set up a meeting.