What Causes Clearwater Jackknife Accidents?

truck hauling on highway

Data1 collected by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that more than 100,000 people were injured in accidents involving large trucks in 2012. Due to their unique construction, many commercial vehicles are vulnerable to certain types of accidents to which other accidents were not. Semi-trucks and several other types of commercial trucks belong to a class of vehicles known as “articulated vehicles,” which consist of multiple segments connected by a moveable joint. While this construction makes these vehicles more maneuverable, it also makes them vulnerable to a type of accident known as a “jackknife accident.” Because these accidents are often the result of someone’s negligence, anyone who has been injured in a jackknife accident should contact a Clearwater truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. To schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers, call the Dolman Law Group today at (727) 451-6900.

What is a Jackknife Accident?

A jackknife accident occurs when the trailer of a truck folds against its cab in a way that resembles the action of a folding knife. When a truck jackknifes, the trailer can travel a significant distance while sweeping across the roadway in a path perpendicular to the flow of traffic. As a result, the damage that a jackknife accident can cause can be widespread and the injuries extremely severe. In addition, when a truck jackknifes, there is the potential that its cargo will escape from its trailer, potentially causing even more widespread damage.

There are many things that could potentially cause a truck to jackknife. Some of the more common include the following:

  • Speeding
  • Improperly loaded or secured cargo
  • Improper braking
  • Failure to account for poor weather or slippery roads
  • Hitting objects or debris

After a jackknife accident, it is important for victims to retain an attorney familiar with representing victims of commercial truck accidents. Determining the cause of an accident often requires significant investigation, and an experienced lawyer will know where and how to look for evidence of negligence. The kinds of evidence that may be relevant in a Clearwater truck accident case include truck maintenance records, trucker hours-of-service logs, surveillance video that may have captured the accidents, data collected from vehicle computers, or eyewitness accounts of the accident.

A jackknife accident has the potential to result in serious injuries, including the following:

  • Broken bones
  • Burns
  • Lacerations
  • Bruises
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Accidental amputations
  • Neurological injuries
  • Crush injuries

These and other injuries that may be sustained in a jackknife accident could easily leave victims with significant medical expenses and the inability to work for an extended period of time. Fortunately, these and other types of losses are often compensable by filing a personal injury claim. In many cases, an attorney will be able to obtain significantly more compensation than a victim would be able to secure acting on his or her own behalf. In many cases, insurance companies will try and offer unrepresented parties an unreasonably low settlement amount hoping that they will simply accept it without asserting their legal rights. As a result, it is extremely important for anyone who has been involved in a truck accident to retain legal counsel as soon as possible.

Contact the Dolman Law Group today to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our experienced Clearwater truck accident attorneys

Jackknife accidents and other kinds of accidents involving semi-trucks are capable of causing extremely serious injuries and property damage. In many cases, people who are affected by accidents involving commercial vehicles are entitled to significant financial compensation. The Clearwater truck accident lawyers of the Dolman Law Group are dedicated to helping people injured in semi-truck accidents recover for their injuries and have the skill and experience required to successfully resolve your case. We take all of our truck accident cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning that you will not pay us for legal representation unless we successfully recover compensation on your behalf. To schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers, please call our office today at (727) 451-6900.

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756