It is estimated that nine percent of annual traffic fatalities in Kentucky involve commercial vehicles. This would add up to more than 90 deaths each year.
While it may seem easy to blame the truck driver for what occurred, there is often more to these accidents than driver error. It’s possible that many of these accidents occur due to inadequate brake maintenance that could lead to the brakes becoming completely inoperative.
Kentucky State Police participated in a 24-hour nationwide inspection campaign concerning the examination of brakes on vehicles. This resulted in a large number of citations being issued – about half involving brake-related concerns often due to brake pads that have worn too thin.
“With commercial vehicles, they have to adjust their brakes,” stated one officer. “If they don’t adjust them they can be rendered completely inoperative and not work at all.” The Commercial Vehicle Enforcement division felt that the campaign was a success concerning their goal to make Kentucky’s roads safer.
Trucks are difficult to operate under any circumstances. The vehicles are large and cumbersome, there are a number of blind spots with mirrors on the truck not necessarily covering every location, and the vehicles do not maneuver or come to stops in the same manner as other vehicles.
The difficulties of driving a truck are compounded when the truck is improperly loaded or poorly maintained. It’s for this reason that attorneys investigating the causes of tractor-trailer accidents need to do their homework and be knowledgeable about how these vehicles operate.
The consequences of a semi-truck accident are too severe to allow sloppy maintenance to occur.
Source: WKMS, “Kentucky State Police Crack Down on Commercial Vehicle Brake Violations,” Rob Canning, May 8, 2014