Missouri Brake Failure Truck Accident Lawsuit Brought Against Trucking Company

Posted on March 25, 2013 · Posted in Auto Electrical Repairs

The failure of brakes on commercial vehicles is one of the most common causes of truck accidents. The National Highway Safety Study published a study, known as the Large Truck Crash Causation Study, which found that Missouri brake failure trucking accidents are happen more frequently than any other type of accident. In this country, 5000 people are killed each year in such crashes.

Trucking accidents related to brake problems can be attributed to a wide range of different problems. In many cases of truck accidents, lawyers defending truck companies blame brake failure as a cause of the accident. However, safety advocates have found that complete brake failure – usually caused by defective brakes – is very rare. More often, brakes fail to perform adequately either because they are poorly maintained, the truck is driven too fast for the road conditions, or some combination of these two factors. Missouri tire failure truck accidents attorneys have found that wet, snowy or icy roads, heavy traffic and fog are all conditions that may contribute to accidents that are ultimately blamed on brake failure.

Complete brake failure is rare largely because of the type of brakes most American trucks utilize. Unlike cars, which have hydraulic brakes that rely on brake fluid, most large trucks use air for braking. Air brakes simply need air pressure in order to function. Because of this fact, the brakes will always work to some extent even if they are not in good repair. A dual brake system which is in widespread use also ensures that truck brakes will not experience complete failure. If they are kept well maintained, air brakes tend to be quite reliable, and therefore are the mechanism of choice in most commercial vehicles.

Reliable or not, though, air brakes in trucks require expertise and care in use. Air brakes have one downside as compared to car brakes – they take longer to engage. When a longer stopping time is tacked onto the increased momentum of a heavily-loaded truck, an aggressive driver or a driver who speeds represent a serious risk to other motorists. Sometimes truck drivers claim their brakes did not engage – that this was the source of an accident. Truck crash specialists assert that truck brakes usually did engage but that the situation demanded fasting braking than they could deliver.

A primary circumstance that may be highlighted in a Missouri brake failure truck accident lawsuit is a lack of maintenance to the brakes, which can make them far less effective than when they are in good repair. The brakes will still work marginally, but if they are used in an emergency they will not stop the truck in time to avoid a collision. Accidents related to the braking system’s failure to engage properly are entirely too common, and what’s more, are usually avoidable. In order to cut down on preventable brake-related accidents, trucking companies must both require and reward their drivers for completing inspections and repairs as needed in transit. Pressuring drivers to push their limits on the road by paying per mile driven is a practice on the part of trucking companies that is contributing to the problem. Trucking companies must create an environment in which drivers benefit directly from inspecting and maintaining their vehicles in order to decrease the number of accidents related to brake problems.