Commercial truck accidents are one of the most destructive vehicle accidents that can occur. The injuries and damage left behind are often catastrophic due to the massive size and weight of these vehicles. There are many causes of truck accidents that the Virginia truck accident attorneys at Shapiro & Appleton have handled, including driver error, speeding, drowsy driving, and fatigued driving on the part of the truck driver. However, a large number of these crashes are a result of poor or improper maintenance of the vehicles by the companies that own them.
It is the responsibility of the truck companies to ensure that the vehicles they are putting on the roads undergo regular inspections and frequent maintenance. If you or a loved one has been injured in a trucking accident, contact our firm today to find out how we can help.
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Poor Truck Maintenance
The federal government has strict regulations in place whose purpose are to make sure commercial trucking companies maintain a safe fleet. However, although there are harsh penalties for ignoring or disobeying these regulations, many trucking companies skirt these rules and allow tractor-trailers on the road that are a danger to the truck drivers operating them, as well as all other motorists and commuters they share the roads with.
For example, tractor-trailers have limited braking capabilities. They need longer distances and more time to slow down or come to a stop than other types of vehicle do. They also have limited steering capabilities, needing large areas in order to turn. Another steering issue is that the rear of the truck does not follow the front of the truck, like in passenger vehicles. When a trucking company has failed to maintain and repair any issues with a truck’s braking or steering systems, the risk of a truck accident spikes.
Other common maintenance failures include overinflated or underinflated tires and windshield wipers that are malfunctioning. These failures by the trucking company and/or the truck driver results in more than 4,000 lives lost in fatal truck accidents each year.
Contact a Virginia Truck Accident Attorney
Fatal truck accidents caused by the failure of the trucking company to maintain their vehicles are entirely preventable. Virginia law allows survivors of victims killed in accidents to pursue damages for their losses through a wrongful death lawsuit. The law understands that no amount of money will ever replace the loved one, but many times, a civil lawsuit is the only option for the family to get justice for their loved one.
At Shapiro & Appleton, our Virginia wrongful death attorneys have decades of experience successfully advocating for victims and their families and would be happy to meet and discuss what your legal options may be. Call 800-752-0042 today for a free case evaluation. Our personal injury firm also offers a free wrongful death guide for families who have lost a loved one in an accident. The guide covers topics such as the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death claim, what types of damages can be pursued, and who can be appointed as personal representative.