Truck Braking Ability

Georgia Truck Accident Attorney

Atlanta truck accident lawyer Stephen M. Ozcomert is a seasoned advocate for victims of personal injury. For over 20 years, he has helped those harmed by the negligence of others under a wide variety of circumstances, including in truck accidents caused by braking failure. Mr. Ozcomert thoroughly investigates truck collisions to find all sources of liability, and fights to maximize compensation for you to the greatest extent possible under the law.

Braking Failure

Brake-related issues are the most common mechanical failure leading to truck accidents. The U.S. Department of Transportation estimates that nearly 30% of all crashes result from the failure of one or more braking systems. Brake malfunctions often involve:

  • Blowouts
  • Overheating
  • Calipers, pads
  • Grease, oil leaks
  • Brake drum, shoes
  • Air valves and gages
  • Pressure supply system
  • Depowering front brakes
  • Failure to inspect, maintain

Trucks and 18-wheelers are massive commercial vehicles with complex brake systems. Brakes are crucial to decelerate and stop. Alleged deficiencies in braking ability may be a negligent driver’s attempt to transfer blame for an accident, or they may be the result of careless truck maintenance. Contact Atlanta truck brake accident attorney Stephen M. Ozcomert if you or someone you care about was a victim of a truck brake failure.

Negligent Truck Operation

Truck driver negligence causes over 87% of accidents. But drivers share the blame with others responsible for brake maintenance. Owners and operators of commercial vehicles often fail to schedule routine inspections and maintenance. Negligent truck operation often involves multiple human errors resulting in:

  • Tire fires
  • Rollovers
  • Jackknifes
  • Cargo spills
  • Hydroplaning
  • Downshifting
  • Engine braking
  • Runaway trucks
  • Trailer swing out

Because truck brakes still provide some level of stopping force, even with maintenance deficiencies, drivers are frequently the culprits for underestimating the necessary stopping distance in emergency situations. Under federal law, drivers have a duty to inspect their vehicles daily and note any problems, including brake imbalance, which must be fixed prior to operation.

Braking Imbalance

Brake imbalance is the most common cause of trucks going out of control. In jackknife situations, the braking force is higher in the tractor’s drive axles than in the trailer’s, causing one to lock while the other rolls. The moving trailer load makes the tractor rotate, causing directional instability. Negligent causes of brake imbalance may include:

  • Defective tires, brakes
  • Improper trailer loading
  • Mismatched components
  • Lack of pre-trip inspection
  • Damaged air-supply system
  • Pneumatic imbalance (wheels)
  • Lock-up from torque imbalance
  • Low, crystallized hydraulic fluids
  • Improper brake or tire maintenance

When trailer axles have higher braking force, the tractor drags the trailer, causing it to swing out. Although proper brake maintenance is critical to prevent truck brake accidents, most truck owners prefer to keep vehicles in service with one brake working harder, causing severe imbalance.

Commercial and Product Liability

Federal and state laws impose personal injury liability on truck owners and operators for the negligent acts of their drivers. Careless drivers may therefore share liability with trucking, hauling, and leasing companies that fail to maintain working brakes in accidents resulting from braking failure. In addition, manufacturers are strictly liable for defective truck brakes. In federal brake recalls, they are forced to notify owners of flawed braking systems and parts. Negligent companies that fail to inspect, maintain, or replace dangerous brakes may be liable for injuries caused by the failure.

Recover Compensation Today

If you were injured in a truck accident involving brake failure, Atlanta personal injury attorney Stephen M. Ozcomert can help. For over 20 years, our firm has been dedicated to recovering compensation for medical expenses, lost income, pain, suffering, and wrongful death for accident victims and their families. We work with the best forensic experts to find all sources of negligence and recover the maximum award under the law for present and future losses. Let us help you win the compensation you deserve. Call (404) 370-1000 today for a free consultation or contact us online.