Jackknife truck accidents occur when trucks with separate cabs and trailers fold in on themselves into a “V” shape, much like a closing pocket knife. While rare, jackknife accidents are some of the most dangerous truck crashes that can occur. A moving truck that jackknifes can easily veer out of control and cause devastating injuries to occupants of smaller vehicles across multiple lanes of traffic.
People injured as a result of jackknife accidents may be entitled to money for their losses. If you were hurt in a Los Angeles jackknife truck accident, the lawyers of Custodio & Dubey LLP can help you pursue the compensation you need to recover. Contact us today to discuss the details of your claim in a free, confidential consultation.
Causes of Jackknife Accidents
Many different factors can compromise the stability of a large truck and lead to jackknife accidents, such as:
- Speeding: Truck drivers who exceed posted speed limits or drive too fast for road conditions are more likely to lose control of their trucks and jackknife, especially when roads are slick and tires lack proper traction.
- Negligent braking: If a truck driver brakes too suddenly, the truck’s cab can slow down more quickly than a fully loaded trailer, which can easily lead to jackknifing.
- Brake failure: When a truck’s brakes are defective or poorly maintained, brake failure can prevent drivers from stopping or slowing appropriately around turns, which is a common cause of jackknifing.
- Poor road conditions: If the road has potholes or is obstructed by debris, large trucks are far more likely to lose traction and jackknife.
- Steep inclines: Driving on steep inclines or declines makes it much more difficult to control large trucks, which are prone to skidding or brake failure that can lead to jackknife accidents.
- Unbalanced cargo: When the cargo in a trailer is not balanced correctly or secured, it can shift during transit and compromise a truck’s center of gravity, making jackknife accidents more likely.
How a Los Angeles Jackknife Truck Accident Lawyer Can Help You
It’s highly recommended to contact an experienced jackknife truck accident attorney after a crash. Truck accident claims are very complex compared to a standard car accident claim. You’ll be going up against big companies who understand that the stakes are high and will work hard to deny or minimize your compensation.
At Custodio & Dubey LLP, we can:
- Help you understand your legal rights and options under California law
- Conduct an independent investigation of the crash to determine who is at fault and who should be held financially responsible
- Locate and preserve hard-to-find evidence, such as trucking company records, truck black box data, and driver cell phone records
- Consult with expert witnesses who can provide testimony about what happened and how your injuries will affect your life
- Manage all paperwork and deadlines on your behalf
- Help you access the medical care you need to recover as soon as possible
- Negotiate for a favorable settlement with trucking insurance companies
- Represent you in court if the insurance carrier is unwilling to make a reasonable settlement offer
Compensation After a Jackknife Truck Accident
If you can establish that the driver or another party in the trucking industry was liable for a jackknife truck accident, you could be entitled to compensation for:
- Past, current, and future medical bills: This includes costs of ambulance rides, hospital stays, surgeries, diagnostic tests, medications, therapy, and other types of follow-up care.
- Incidental costs related to your injuries: Incidental expenses are the costs of things like transportation to and from medical appointments, in-home care, and home or vehicle accessibility modifications.
- Property damage: Expenses related to the repair or replacement of vehicles or other property damaged in the jackknife crash.
- Lost wages: Reductions in your take-home pay as a result of missed time at work.
- Lost earning potential: Reductions in your lifetime earning capacity due to long-term disabilities that prevent you from returning to your former job
- Pain and suffering: The subjective costs of the mental anguish and emotional suffering you experienced due to the accident.
- Punitive damages: Compensation awarded in rare cases when the defendant’s conduct was particularly reckless or intentionally malicious.
Proving Who Is At Fault for a Jackknife Truck Accident
Winning a jackknife truck accident claim in California hinges on proving negligence. You must be able to show that the at-fault party(s) had a duty to keep you safe and did not take reasonable measures to prevent the accident from happening.
The first step in that direction is by identifying who can be held liable for the accident. Numerous parties – such as the truck driver, trucking company, truck owner, mechanics, cargo loading company, or other motorists – are all potential defendants. A skilled truck accident lawyer will conduct an in-depth investigation to identify what went wrong and who should be held accountable for your injuries. Sometimes, more than one party can be held liable. That will depend on the facts of the case.
Next, your lawyer will gather and organize the evidence into a compelling case for maximum compensation for you. Most injury cases resolve in settlements, but sometimes it takes a trial to convince the truck company’s insurer that you mean business. At Custodio & Dubey LLP, we’ll be by your side every step of the way.
Contact an Experienced Los Angeles Jackknife Truck Accident Lawyer
At Custodio & Dubey LLP, we are committed to approaching every case we handle with the best interests of our clients in mind. In addition to providing top-quality legal services, our team will help you find the medical care you need, arrange transportation for you, and offer seasoned advice based on years of real-world experience.
Let us manage every aspect of your Los Angeles jackknife truck accident while you focus on your health. We’ll push tirelessly for compensation and justice on your behalf. Contact us today to learn more in a free initial case review.