Jackknife Truck Accidents: How They Happen & Getting Compensation

Truck accident

Jackknife truck accidents occur when a truck’s trailer swings to the side and stops perpendicular to both the cab of the truck, as well as other vehicles on the road. This type of accident is dangerous for obvious reasons; a jackknifing truck may roll over, hit other cars, and may even trap and crush another nearby car between the cab and trailer.

How Jackknife Accidents Happen

Most jackknife accidents are completely preventable. While unforeseeable factors, like an animal darting into road, contribute to some of these serious truck accidents, the majority occur because of driver error. Some examples of driver error and negligence that can contribute to a jackknife accident include:

  • Traveling too fast for conditions. A truck driver who is traveling too fast for conditions takes the risk of being involved in a jackknife accident. If the driver has to stop suddenly, the momentum of the trailer can continue — even though the cab has stopped — and cause a jackknife accident.
  • Inexperience. Driving a large truck is not easy work, and it is not for everyone. More seasoned truck drivers are more able to navigate their vehicles and know how their truck and trailer will respond to turns, speed, stops, quick maneuvers, etc. A novice truck driver may not have the experience it takes to make smart decisions when behind the wheel, increasing the risk of a jackknife incident.
  • Intoxication or fatigue. Intoxicated or fatigued driving make it difficult for even the most experienced drivers to safely operate a truck. Intoxication and fatigue lead to slower response times, which can cause a jackknife accident.
  • Improperly balanced/loaded trailers. If a cargo load is improperly balanced or secured, it may result in unequal weight distribution, causing a trailer to tip or jackknife.

If you believe any of the following played a part in your accident, you may be able to hold the driver or the trucking company liable for your injuries.

Proving Negligence and Recovering the Compensation that You Deserve

If you believe that the jackknife accident that caused your injuries would not have occurred but for another party’s negligence, you will need to prove it. By gathering evidence, including ECM data, shipping and loading logs, and witness testimony, you can build a case that proves that the responsible party breached the duty of care owed to you and others on the road, resulting in the accident and your injuries.

It is important that you act quickly — the longer you wait, the more able the trucking company is to destroy evidence, and the closer you come to approaching New York’s statute of limitations.

To get started on gathering evidence and building your case today, call the Long Island truck accident attorneys at the Goldstein & Bashner. Your first consultation is always free and unless we win your case, you do not pay us a dime.

Contact us today: 516-217-9097.

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