One of the most common accidents involving trucks is a “jackknife accident.” This is the term that is used to describe an accident where the trailer and front of the truck veer in different directions to form an “L” or “V,” resembling the shape of a pocket knife (also referred to as a jackknife). While there are many reasons these types of crashes occur, they can result in severe and catastrophic injuries to other motorists. If you were injured in a truck jackknife accident, you may be entitled to compensation by filing a personal injury claim.
Common Reasons for Jackknife Accidents
When a jackknife accident occurs, a truck can spin horizontally and block all lanes of traffic. It can also lead to a pile-up of cars and other vehicles that may be unable to stop in time to avoid colliding with the truck. In many instances, a truck driver may be at fault — but there can also be numerous other causes for these types of crashes, including the carelessness of other motorists on the road.
Common reasons jackknife accidents occur include the following:
- Defective brakes
- Sudden braking
- Equipment failure
- Speeding or reckless driving
- Inadequate truck maintenance
- Fatigued driving
- Turning too quickly
- Poor road conditions
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
Determining liability can be complex after a jackknife truck accident. Depending upon the facts and circumstances surrounding the accident, there may be several parties who should be held responsible for their negligence. For instance, the vehicle manufacturer may be liable for an equipment defect, or the trucking company might be to blame if it knowingly loaded the truck over the weight limit. If the driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident, they may be held accountable. In addition, a municipality might be responsible if a hazardous road condition caused the accident.
Compensation for Truck Jackknife Accidents
Due to the size of the vehicle involved, truck jackknife accidents can result in serious injuries to those in smaller cars, resulting in the need for extensive medical treatment and time lost from work. Jackknife truck accident injuries can range from soft tissue injuries to broken bones, lacerations, and concussions. They can also cause nerve damage, permanent disability, disfigurement, and paralysis. In severe cases, these collisions can also result in fatality.
If you were injured in a truck jackknife accident, it’s crucial to seek medical attention immediately. Not only is this important for your health and to rule out any internal injuries, but medical documentation is critical evidence in any personal injury claim you might file. By pursuing a personal injury lawsuit for a jackknife accident, you may be eligible to recover the economic damages you suffered, including your unreimbursed medical costs, lost wages, future lost earnings, and out-of-pocket expenses.
You may also be entitled to compensation for your non-economic losses — also referred to as “pain and suffering” damages — if you were hurt in a jackknife accident. This category of damages is meant to compensate you for your non-pecuniary losses, such as the physical pain and mental anguish you experienced due to your accident-related injuries, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you were injured in a truck jackknife accident, you may have incurred substantial economic and non-economic damages. A skillful personal injury attorney can help ensure you secure the maximum compensation to which you are entitled. The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has represented truck accident victims for more than 30 years and has assisted them with obtaining the best possible results in their unique cases.
The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has convenient office locations in Manhattan, the Bronx, and Brooklyn, as well as mobile locations serving Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester County, Rockland County, Nassau County, and Suffolk County. Contact us today for a consultation.