The components on commercial trucks undergo far more wear and tear than the parts on the average passenger vehicle. While you may put a hundred miles on your car a day, a trucker could drive ten times that much.
Their vehicles are already bigger and heavier, which adds more strain on vehicle components. When you combine that with hours of continual use, it is little wonder that poor vehicle maintenance is a known risk factor for semitruck crashes.
Few vehicle components suffer the strain of those long days driving like the tires on the truck will. Commercial drivers can develop flat tires or have tires blow out while they are en route somewhere. Often, truckers don’t stop or even slow down after losing a tire. Now some states have started trying to crack down on the tire carcasses commercial vehicles leave behind.
Why are tire carcasses a concern?
When a tire fails on a commercial truck, it doesn’t necessarily disable the vehicle. Many times, there are two or even three tires on a single side of one axle. If one blows out, the others will continue supporting the vehicle.
The problem with a trucker not stopping after a tire blows out is that they leave behind a damaged strip of rubber. It may be in one long piece, or it might break into several smaller pieces. In either case, the tire carcass left behind is a real risk to others on the road. It could force people to swerve or damage their vehicles, possibly leading to a crash.
Additionally, big trucks with flat tires or that have a blowout occur at high speeds can lose control and cause crashes. The installation of specialized sensors at truck enforcement stops in several states may help detect when a truck has a weak or flat tire. They can also track which vehicles lost tires between checkpoints and potentially holds the trucker or their employer accountable for leaving behind dangerous tire carcasses on the highway.
Drivers aren’t always the ones to blame for a crash
The person in the vehicle isn’t always the one at fault for a collision. Sometimes, it is clearly an employer or a third party who is to blame. Crashes caused by poorly-maintained trucks could cause liability for the truck driver’s employer, not just the driver themselves. Those hurt by semitrucks that lose control or the tire carcasses left behind after a commercial vehicle has a blowout may have grounds for an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit.
Learning more about what causes commercial truck crashes can help you seek justice after experiencing one.