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What causes a semitrailer to jackknife?

On Behalf of | Feb 26, 2022 | Firm News

When Cincinnati drivers are traveling on the freeway, they are sharing the road with many semi-trucks. The Cincinnati area is especially busy with interstate trucking and trucking accidents are common. Truck crashes are among the most dangerous crashes on our roadways. Almost every driver in the Cincinnati area has come across a truck that has jackknifed and sprawled across several lanes of highway. You may wonder what can cause this dangerous situation. There are many reasons why a semi-truck may jackknife which include the following:

  • Improper brake maintenance: When a truck’s brakes are not properly maintained, they can cause serious problems. The axles can lock up, particularly when braking hard. In that situation, the truck will then be dragging a trailer with locked brakes which can cause the tractor and the trailer to go in opposite directions.
  • Driver inexperience: There are many truck drivers on the road who lack the experience necessary to operate these large vehicles. An inexperienced driver may not be able to properly handle the truck, especially when encountering dangerous or unexpected situations.
  • Traveling too fast: In many truck accident situations, a driver is traveling too fast. Semi-trucks can weight up to 80,000 pounds when they are fully loaded. If they are speeding and have to stop suddenly, the trailer will stop at a different speed than the cab. This can cause them to go in two separate directions.
  • Weather conditions: Wet or icy roads can lead to a jackknifed semi.

If you have been involved in a truck accident due to no fault of your own, you may want to speak with a legal professional who is skilled in personal injury. An attorney can help you understand what happened to cause the accident and who is at fault. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and other damages.