What causes large trucks to jackknife on the road? Are these accidents caused by driver action, vehicle failure, or a combination of these factors? Jackknifes are a common type of truck crash and they create a high risk of vehicle rollover. Moreover, a jackknifed truck on a busy roadway creates potential for a multi-vehicle accident. Jackknife accidents are often caused by speeding, equipment malfunction, curved roads, or bad weather. Of course, any combination of these factors can compound risk and increase the likelihood of a truck crash.
Common mechanical problems that can cause a vehicle to jackknife include brake problems that cause a vehicle's wheels to lock up, transmission malfunction, or defective engine components. Bad weather coupled with poor tire traction on slick roads can cause a jackknife. Similarly, driver errors including speeding, driving too fast for conditions, over-correcting during a turn or lane change, or failing to secure the trailer hitch to the truck are common causes of a jackknife truck crash.
In 2010, trucks that jackknifed were involved in 134 fatal crashes, 1,000 injury crashes, and 2,000 property damage-only crashes on American roads. While the number of fatalities jackknife accidents cause is low, the frequency of these types of accidents is rising. In 2014, 193 trucks were involved in fatal accidents. In 2015, that number rose to 226, and the number fell back to 194 in 2016. From 2014 through 2016, a total of 613 large trucks were involved in a fatal truck crash that involved a truck jackknifing. During 2016, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recorded more than 1,000 jackknife accidents, or 1.1% of all large truck accidents, which caused property damage only.
The data shows that jackknifing itself is not the most harmful event in a truck crash. However, it is an event that causes the driver to lose control over the vehicle, leading to secondary events which can cause fatalities. In 2016, these harmful events included collisions with other vehicles in the roadway, 174 collisions with fixed objects, and 285 rollover accidents.
Brad Pistotnik Law is a truck accident lawyer, attorney, and abogado with attorneys, lawyers, and abogados who represent clients in Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Texas, Florida, Missouri, and Illinois who suffer personal injuries in a truck crash and the survivors of those who suffer a wrongful death. Whether the accident occurred in Wichita, Liberal, Garden City, Deer Creek, Blackwell, Newkirk, Braman, Medford, Jefferson, Pond Creek, Kremlin, North Enid, Covintgton, Waukomis, Morrison, Glencoe, Pawnee, Kaw City, Sylvia, St. John, Hudson, Radium, Larned, Lewis, Kinsley, Offerie, Mullinville, Greensburg, Haviland, Belvidere, Cullison, Sawyer, Nashville, Zenda, Alden, Sterling, Turon, Dodge City, Ryus, Sublette, Kavlvesta, Ensign, Fowler, Willow Island, Cozad, Lexington, Sumner, Eustis, Curtis, Wellfleet, Stockville, Orafino, Oxford, Indianola, Overton, Westmark, Loomis, Atlanta, Sedalia, Pittsburg, Olathe, Lee's Summit, Wheatland, Bolivar, Eldon, Camdenton, Osage Beach, or elsewhere in these states, our team pursues truck crash claims so that our clients receive the compensation they need to recover from their injuries.
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