Regular maintenance checks are vital to keeping any vehicle in good working order. This is especially true for large commercial vehicles, which are under considerable mechanical stress week in and week out. These vehicles also weigh up to 20 times more than the average passenger car, which puts more stress on the truck’s parts and makes them more likely to fail. When truck drivers and trucking companies don’t prioritize maintenance, serious accidents can result.

Laws Governing Truck Maintenance

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and other regulators have implemented many rules regarding truck maintenance and additional safety measures. Here are some key FMCSA regulations concerning truck maintenance:

  • All commercial trucks must be inspected by a qualified inspector every 12 months.
  • Trucking companies must “systematically inspect, repair, and maintain” all the trucks in their fleets.
  • In addition to inspecting their vehicles before each trip, truck drivers must complete a daily post-trip inspection and report any issues to their employers.

A truck driver or trucking company may be guilty of criminal negligence in the event of a truck accident caused by no maintenance.

Common Maintenance Issues Leading to Truck Accidents

The regulations above are designed to reduce the likelihood of preventable truck accidents. Unfortunately, they are only effective when they are followed to the letter. When truck drivers and carriers fail to regularly inspect their vehicles as required, they increase the chance of accidents resulting from the following common maintenance issues:

  • Brake Failure: Worn or improperly maintained brakes can fail, leading to catastrophic accidents.
  • Tire Blowouts: Inadequately inflated or worn tires can explode, potentially causing the driver to lose control.
  • Steering Issues: Faulty steering systems can hinder a driver’s ability to control the truck, increasing the risk of veering off course.
  • Improperly Secured Cargo: Cargo that is not secured correctly can shift in transit, throwing the truck out of balance. It can even fall off the vehicle entirely, creating hazardous conditions for other vehicles.
  • Engine Problems: An inadequately maintained engine can seize up, catch fire, or even explode, leading to sudden stops, loss of power, or worse.

What To Do After a Semi-Truck Accident

If you’ve been hurt in a truck accident caused by a driver or carrier’s failure to maintain their vehicle, you could be entitled to file a claim for compensation. In many ways, this claim begins as soon as the accident occurs, and what you do in the aftermath can significantly affect your chance of success. With that in mind, consider taking the following steps:

  • Seek medical attention right away and follow your doctor’s instructions
  • Save any evidence from the accident scene (photos, witness contact information, etc.)
  • Do not discuss the accident on social media
  • Do not talk to any insurance companies without speaking to a lawyer first
  • Hire a truck accident lawyer for maintenance issues

Contact Our Arizona Truck Accident Attorney to Learn More

Are you looking for an experienced truck accident attorney for maintenance issues? Then contact Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer today. We will review your case for free and advise you on your options for pursuing compensation.

Author: Alex Silkman

Alex Silkman is the founder and managing member of Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer. He focuses exclusively on personal injury and wrongful death cases, with the goal of getting truly just results for accident victims and their families.