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Truck Jackknife Accidents in Phoenix

By Breyer Law Offices on October 20, 2016

The Arizona Trucking Association (ATA) took the initiative by recently instituting their “Share the Road” program which is being funded through a grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. The trucking industry in Arizona is using this program to demonstrate a commitment to sharing the roadways safely along with all vehicles. One aspect of the Share the Road program uses industry veterans to reach out to passenger vehicle drivers in the local communities to engage them on safety topics.

Recent topics associated with best practices included:  truck blind spots, stopping distances, and making lane changes in efforts to heighten awareness and reduce dangerous accidents.

One particularly devastating situation that is possible when a tractor-trailer vehicle is traveling is known as “jackknifing.” This occurs when the tractor (cab) of the truck and the trailer it is hauling become split in differing directions that could appear similar to that of an acute angle of a collapsible pocket knife. If a vehicle towing a trailer slides, the trailer can suddenly shift until it is stuck at an off-setting angle such as at 45 degrees.  Another way of describing this occurrence is when the tractor and the trailer are “out of sync” and begin moving in opposite directions. Some of the potential ending results are that one or both flip over, or the trailer becomes dislodged.  In extremely rare instances, a driver may intentionally jackknife the vehicle in order to stop the truck from proceeding over and falling into an embankment following a failure of the vehicle’s brakes.

Causes of Truck Jackknife Accidents

  • While traveling atop very wet or icy roads, such as in a winter-weather event.
  • When the operator of the vehicle brakes abruptly, causing the trailer with tremendous weight and momentum to begin shift off-course.
  • Can occur when the driver makes an abrupt action at a high rate of speed with a trailer containing a very light load that is much more likely to be volatile.
  • Resulting from improperly loaded cargo in the trailer, when all of the weight is on one side making it very unstable.
  • When the cargo within the trailer is not properly secured and can suddenly shift in one direction in response to a turn.
  • Studies have shown that the likelihood of occurrence is much greater when the vehicle encounters curves and is traveling downhill at excessive speeds.

Those severely injured in an accident involving a truck may suddenly find themselves faced with life-changing physical impairments, the inability to work, and massive medical expenses. If you have experienced an injury in an accident due to the inattention of another driver, you should seek proper medical attention and retain legal expertise. Make the call to consult with our Phoenix jackknife accident attorneys at the Breyer Law Offices, P.C. at (602) 267-1280, who will insure that your rights are protected. We are firmly dedicated to achieving substantial compensation for Arizona injury victims.

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