August 31, 2015- Henrico, VA
All lanes of I-295 near the I-95 split in northern Henrico were closed after the trailer on a commercial vehicle broke free, hit a guardrail and then an SUV. The out-of-control trailer eventually overturned in a ditch, spilling its payload of sand and leaking diesel fuel. No one was hurt in the crash, but the lane closures backed-up morning commuter traffic for more than four miles.
According to CBS 6 News, the motor carrier unit of the State Police Department, a specialized investigatory team, is currently looking into whether or not equipment failure was to blame.
A study conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration revealed that in 2013, 3,906 large trucks were involved in fatal crashes, 73,000 were involved in injury crashes, and 265,000 were involved in property damage only crashes.
Due to their large size and weight, tractor-trailer are particularly susceptible to equipment malfunction. Commercial transportation requires that tractor-trailers be driven continuously over long distances, adding additional stress to typically overtaxed equipment.
To avoid malfunction, regular inspections of a truck’s brakes, hitches, tires, freight-securing devices, and other such systems must be checked and in some cases adjusted on a regular basis.
Federal motor carrier safety regulations require regular safety inspections of commercial vehicles. Trucking companies are responsible for making sure their truckers know how to comply with these mandates. This is because on longer hauls, drivers may need to complete equipment checks and/or adjustments while in transit.
In addition to training and drivers and ensuring compliance with safety mandates, trucking companies are responsible for their own conducting general maintenance on their trucks between hauls.
In many cases, accidents that result from defective truck components are caused by negligent vehicle maintenance on the part of companies that own tractor trailers.
If you or a loved one is injured due to a malfunctioning or improperly maintained tractor-trailer, truck, or other commercial vehicle, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at ReidGoodwin today to schedule a legal evaluation.