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Large truck accidents come in many forms. Drivers receive special training to learn how to retain control of their vehicles, regardless of the weather or road conditions. Tractor-trailers, or any automobile that has a trailer attached to it, inherently carry risks for specific types of accidents. One type of accident involving vehicles with trailers is often referred to as a jackknife accident.
As any truck driver can tell you, driving with a trailer is challenging for a number of reasons. The driver must be aware of the weight of their trailer, when to brake and how to take sharp curves when a trailer is attached to their automobile. Yet, even with training and years of experience under a driver’s belt, these accidents can still occur. For non-professional drivers who are pulling trailers or cars behind their vehicles, jackknifing is a major concern, posing a threat to the driver, their passengers and to all other vehicles they share the road with.
How Jackknife Accidents Happen
Jackknife accidents occur when the trailer attached to a vehicle begins to move in a different direction, creating an L-shape (resembling a jackknife blade). These accidents happen for a number of reasons, including improper braking, weather conditions leading to skids, or the failure of equipment. Jackknife accidents often stem from the loss of traction of the attached trailer. For this reason, the risk of jackknifing is increased when a trailer is empty or has a very light load. Many tractor-trailers have equipment to prevent such accidents from happening. For example, anti-lock brakes are relatively effective in preventing jackknifing in trucks.
Avoiding Jackknife Accidents
If you’ve ever seen one of these accidents occur, you know how terrifying they can be. Jackknifing accidents are a risk whenever a trailer or another vehicle is attached to an automobile, and the person operating that automobile should be experienced in operating their vehicle with an attachment.
There are many examples of jackknife accidents in Texas. It was a jackknife accident that led to the death of a Texas truck driver in June of 2016. Two 18-wheelers collided, causing one of the trucks to jackknife into a grassy median on Texas Highway 31. The jackknifed truck burst into flames, killing the driver.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a jackknife accident in Texas that caused an injury, the truck accident attorneys at Guajardo & Marks might be able to help. For victims of driver negligence or defective vehicle equipment, the costs of an injury can be staggering. In addition to the pain and suffering caused by an injury, victims also face steep medical bills, loss of income, loss of work capacity and, in some cases, the loss of a loved one. Contact us today for a free consultation. We earn no fee unless we win.