What is a Jackknife Accident and Why Do They Happen?

Jackknife accidents are a type of accident that can happen to vehicles that are “articulated,” which means that they are made up of multiple segments that are connected by a moveable joint. When an articulated vehicle jackknifes, the segments fold against each other in a way that resembles a pocketknife closing.

While there are many types of articulated vehicles, including trains, trams, and certain city buses, the ones that we most commonly encounter as motorists are large commercial trucks like semis or tanker trucks. When vehicles like these jackknife, it can cause widespread damage and extremely serious injuries to anything or anyone that happens to be in the area.

What Causes Jackknife Accidents?

Commercial vehicles should not jackknife under normal conditions, and people who are injured by jackknifed trucks are often able to recover compensation for the losses they have sustained. Some of the more common causes of jackknife accidents in the Charleston area include the following:

  • Speeding
  • Ignoring high winds or poor weather conditions
  • Improperly loaded to secured cargo
  • Improper braking
  • Distracted driving

Recovering Compensation for a Jackknife Accident

While it may be clear that a jackknife accident was not your fault, it is not always clear exactly whose fault it was. There are a number of parties that could potentially be held liable for a jackknife accident, including the following:

  • The truck driver
  • The truck driver’s employer
  • The truck manufacturer
  • The company responsible for loading the truck’s cargo
  • Another driver

In order to recover compensation, victims must first be able to determine who they can hold liable for their accident. Next, they need to be able to establish their damages, such as their medical expenses, lost income, loss of quality of life, property damage, and physical and emotional pain and suffering, just to name a few. Accomplishing these tasks can be a complicated process, especially when you are dealing with an insurance company that deals with claims like yours on a regular basis. For this reason, anyone who has been injured in a jackknife accident should retain a lawyer immediately.

Call the Hartman Law Firm Today to Speak with a Charleston, South Carolina Truck Accident Attorney

If you have been injured in an accident involving a large commercial truck, you should speak to an attorney as soon as you can. Charleston truck accident lawyer Frank Hartman understands how to get victims the compensation they deserve and fights hard to protect his clients’ rights. To schedule a free case evaluation with Mr. Hartman, call our office today at 843-300-7600 or send us an email through our online contact form.

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