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Seattle Jackknife Accident Attorneys

Jackknife Or Brake Accident

Jackknifing occurs when the trailer of a truck skids and folds against the tractor at an acute angle, resembling the folding of a pocket knife. Motorists in close proximity are put in immediate danger as they can experience a collision with the trailer as it swings. Even worse, a car can be crushed between the trailer and the tractor, causing severe injuries or death to the passengers. If you or a loved one has suffered significant losses in a Washington jackknife truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation for all resultant damages.

To attain the settlement you deserve, you need to establish liability. However, the negligent actions which contributed to the jackknife truck accident could have been performed by anyone at any level of the trucking industry, whether in manufacturing, loading, management, etc. The Seattle accident attorneys at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. can use their extensive knowledge and resources to conduct a thorough analysis of your case and extract valuable information that supports your claim. For a free consultation, please call (888) 228-3860 today.

What Causes Jackknifing?

Generally, jackknifing occurs due to the loss of traction, or grip, on the road. This can be caused by any of the following:

  • Brake failure
  • Defective tires
  • Improper braking
  • Slick road conditions
  • Force of a prior collision

In most instances of jackknifing, the truck driver encounters an emergency situation and slams on the brakes, causing them to lock. This leaves the wheels without enough traction to stop. If the trailer wheels also lock, and the trailer continues ahead with enough forward momentum, it will eventually swing sideways into a jackknife.

How to Prevent a Jackknife Accident

While all motorists are expected to practice caution on the road, truckers must take extra care to keep everyone safe. Here are some tips on how to avoid jackknifing:

  • Check your mirrors frequently for trailer swing, especially when hauling an empty trailer.
  • Brake before turns, not during them.
  • Avoid slamming on the brakes.
  • If you need to avoid a hazard, try not to brake and swerve at the same time.
  • When loading, make sure you keep a low center of gravity by distributing the weight evenly and on the bottom.

Executives in the trucking industry can do their part in preventing jackknife accidents by outfitting all of their trucks with the latest anti-jackknifing technology, such as anti-lock brakes, load-sensing regulators, and fifth wheels.

Seattle Jackknife Accident Attorneys - Providing Upfront and Honest Legal Counsel

At Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S., our Seattle big rig accident attorneys value integrity and close communication with our clients. From the very start, we will be honest with you on the merits of your claim. If together we decide to proceed with your case, then we will make sure you are fully aware of your case’s progress and your legal options every step of the way. Contact us today for a full assessment.

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