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Personal Injury Firm in Los Angeles

Semi-Truck Tire Blowouts

Los Angeles Truck Accident Lawyer

Most semi-trucks weigh about 20 to 30 times more than an average passenger vehicle. Due to their sheer weight and size, a semi-truck is nearly a guarantee to crush most passenger vehicles in a traffic collision, especially when high speeds are involved. Unfortunately, large commercial vehicles and semi-trucks are one of the leading causes of all traffic related deaths in the United States.

There are several ways a semi-truck can cause property damage and severe injuries to another driver. You’ve probably seen debris on the side of the road that came from the shredded tire of a semi-truck. Commercial semi-trucks experience serious tire problems more frequently than people know. A semi-truck tire blowout is a dangerous occurrence and can lead to very serious consequences.

If you or a loved one was injured as a result of a semi-truck tire blowout, you need to speak with an experienced Los Angeles truck accident lawyer. The truck accident lawyers at West Coast Trial Lawyers understand how trucking insurance companies operate, and we will help you recover the compensation you deserve in order to deal with your medical bills so that you can take care of the ones you love and focus on your recovery.

Facts About Semi-Truck Tire Blowouts

All large commercial trucking companies have a legal duty to ensure that their trucks are operating at the highest standards of safety. This includes, among other preventative measures, ensuring that every truck they put on the road is equipped with safe tires. Trucking companies don’t always live up to their legally mandated safety standards, however. Sometimes, they put semi-trucks on the road with unsafe tires.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) conducted a recent and comprehensive study to determine why semi-truck crashes occur. The FMCSA exclusively reviewed semi-truck crashes that resulted in injuries or deaths. Of the almost 142,000 large truck accidents that were studied, 8,000, or 5.6% were caused by truck tire blowouts.

Why Do Semi-Truck Tire Blowouts Happen?

It’s very uncommon for a semi-truck tire blowout to occur for reasons that are not in the hands of the trucking company or the person or entities responsible for inspecting, repairing, or operating the truck. It’s entirely reasonable for a semi-truck driver to come across an unavoidable object or an unexpected pothole and blow out a tire. But for the most part, semi-truck tire blowouts are entirely preventable.

Below are a few reasons why preventable semi-truck tire blowouts occur:

Improperly Installed Tires: Tire professionals sometimes make careless and unnecessary mistakes. When tires are not properly installed by a qualified mechanic, tire installation errors can increase the likelihood of a semi-truck tire blowout.

Truck Driver Error: Truck driver error is one of the more common reasons for a semi-truck tire blowout to occur. For example, a semi-truck driver might hit a curb and cause severe damage to a tire. Also, a truck driver might not notice when a tire has lost pressure and will keep driving that way, unaware that their truck is operating under unsafe conditions.  

Inadequate Vehicle Inspection: Semi-truck tires require inspection on a regular basis. Truck tires tend to wear out gradually, and most tire problems can and should be detected or repaired with regular maintenance.

Defective Manufacturing: A semi-truck tire blowout is not always a trucking company’s fault. Sometimes a tire manufacturer is at fault for producing a defective product.

Overloaded Trucks: As a cost effective measure, commercial trucking companies will sometimes overload their trucks. This is a dangerous practice and can easily lead to semi-truck tire blowouts.

How Are Truck Accidents Different Than Car Accidents?

Severity of Injuries or Fatalities: It shouldn’t come as a surprise when injuries and fatalities sustained as a result of a semi-truck blowout accident are significantly worse than in a car accident.

Trucking Industry Laws: All commercial trucking companies and truck drivers are required to abide by safety regulations implemented by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA). These regulations are intended to make roads safe for commercial truck drivers and all drivers. Any truck drivers or commercial trucking companies that don’t abide by these safety regulations can be held liable in the event of a semi-truck blowout incident.

Insurance Coverage: When dealing with commercial trucking insurance, there is more coverage at stake. If you were involved in a semi-truck blowout accident, our Los Angeles truck accident lawyers will deal with the insurance companies so that you can obtain maximum compensation for all your injuries and damages.

Truck Accident Investigations: Accident investigations involving commercial trucking companies are expensive and more extensive than in most car accident cases. A skilled Los Angeles truck accident lawyer understands how to correctly conduct a complex accident investigation, and will do so in a time sensitive manner in order to preserve crucial evidence.

How To Prove Liability In Semi-Truck Blowout Lawsuits?

More than one party can be held liable for injuries and losses suffered as a result of a semi-truck blowout incident. Proving liability in these cases will involve one (and sometimes both) of two legal theories: negligence and strict liability.

Negligence in Truck Blowout Compensation Claims

The most common way of establishing liability is to prove that a company or person’s negligence was responsible for the blowout. Truck drivers and commercial trucking companies all have a legal duty to avoid creating dangerous situations on public roadways. Truck accident victims are entitled to seek fair compensation for their injuries and losses when truck drivers or trucking companies make mistakes.

Common examples of truck driver and trucking company negligence include:

  1. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  2. Distracted driving (talking on the phone, texting, not watching the road)
  3. Hiring underqualified or inexperienced drivers.
  4. Improperly loading truck cargo.
  5. Logging too many hours behind the wheel.
  6. Failing to conduct regular truck maintenance.
  7. Driving drowsy or fatigued.

Strict Liability in Truck Accident Blowout Claims

The second theory of liability involved in these cases is called strict liability. Product designers and product manufacturers in state of California, and any companies involved in the chain of distribution, can all be held liable if a defective product causes a blowout incident.

Negligence will not be factor in these cases because these companies can be held liable whether they made a mistake or not that contributed to the blowout incident.

Strict liability claims can be based on:

  • Defective tires.
  • Defective brake lights.
  • Defective engine or transmission components.
  • Defective brakes.
  • Defective cargo ties or straps.
  • Defective accelerator pedals.

Contact us to find out how we can help

If you have sustained injuries as a result of a semi-truck blowout, an attorney at our firm can help you recover financial compensation for the losses you have suffered, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call us today at 213 927 3700 or email to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring, and compassionate legal team.

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