According to one study, mechanical failures are a factor in about 12 percent of all auto accidents. Most of these mechanical failures are due to routine wear on car parts or a lack of proper maintenance. Another study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that about 20 percent of all traffic accidents are caused in some way by poor maintenance or a total lack of maintenance. Based on these statistics, a significant number of preventable crashes result from maintenance issues. In spite of this, some trucking companies continue to skimp on maintenance to cut costs, putting everyone on the road at risk.
Despite Regulations, Vehicle Maintenance Remains a Cause of Accidents Involving Tractor-Trailer Rigs
Federal statistics show that many accidents involving tractor-trailers are a result of poor maintenance of those rigs, despite regulations regarding truck upkeep. While regulations have reduced the percentage of accidents involving tractor-trailers that are due to maintenance problems, maintenance remains a factor in accidents involving tractor-trailers.
The size disparity between tractor-trailers and passenger vehicles makes it clear that, in the case of accidents involving cars and semis, someone must closely examine the issue of fault. The size advantage enjoyed by semis ensures that, in a collision, regardless of who is at fault, the occupants of the passenger vehicles involved are much more likely to be seriously injured.
Drivers Can Take Steps to Protect Their Rights When Involved in Accidents With Semis
If you are involved in an accident with a semi, you should always first determine whether anyone in your vehicle requires medical attention. After that, if you are able, you should:
- Call for emergency medical assistance, if needed.
- Call the police to report the accident.
- Document as much as possible, including the license plate numbers of involved vehicles, witness information, and insurance information of the involved parties.
Taking these simple steps can go far to protect your rights in the event of an accident involving a semi or tractor-trailer. However, to fully protect your rights might require further steps, including gaining access to maintenance records and other information to help determine whether the condition of the truck was a factor in the accident. In such instances, an attorney can be valuable and ensure that you recover the compensation to which you are entitled.
Call Stewart J. Guss Today to Speak with a Houston Truck Accident Attorney
If you were involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer rig and believe the driver of the truck was at fault, you could be entitled to compensation. If there is a question as to whether truck maintenance was at issue, the assistance of competent attorneys to investigate such questions might prove vital. For a free case evaluation to see if you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries, contact Stewart J. Guss, attorney at law, at (281) 664-6500, or send us an email through our online contact form.