A trucker on an icy or wet road who has to make a sudden stop has a critical decision to make. If braking is done improperly, the drive wheels lock up and the truck goes into a skid. The powered tractor might stop, but the trailer wheels keep rolling, and the trailer swings out to the side, twisting around nearly 180 degrees until the tractor-trailer looks like a partially folded pocket knife or jackknife. A jackknife big rig accident, with the trailer sweeping across multiple lanes of traffic, can take out several cars in an instant. Jackknife crashes are bad enough, but an 18-wheeler that jackknifes at high speeds can roll over as well, inflicting even greater damage on the cars (and their passengers) in front of, behind, and to either side of the jackknifing semi.
Tractor-trailer jackknife accidents are exceedingly dangerous and likely to cause catastrophic injury or death. They are one of the many types of truck accidents handled by the Atlanta tractor trailer accident lawyers at Durham Law Group. If you’ve been hurt in a major truck accident in Atlanta, or if you lost a loved one in a tragic fatal truck crash, contact the best tractor-trailer accident attorney Atlanta has to offer to discuss how we can help you recover compensation and deal with the harm and challenges inflicted on you by a negligent truck driver or trucking company.
How to Stop a Truck
Big rigs don’t just have a gas pedal and brake pedal like you find in a standard car. 18-wheelers are immensely more complicated and take specialized training to operate. There is also more than one way to stop a tractor-trailer. Basically, there are three different ways to bring a speeding semi to a relatively quick stop, and it’s up to the trucker to know and apply the best and safest method given the circumstances. These methods are described below.
- Locking the steering axle brakes allows the truck to move forward in a straight line, even if the wheels are at an angle.
- Locking the trailer axles will bring the rig to a halt, but the driver will lack control over steering.
- Locking the drive axles will stop the semi but is the most likely of the three methods to cause a jackknife big rig accident.
When speeding down the highway, road, and weather conditions, as well as traffic patterns, can change quite suddenly. A skilled and attentive trucker will always be scanning the road ahead and leaving plenty of room between the big rig and other vehicles. If a sudden stop is necessary, choosing the right method and keeping a cool head is essential to stopping safely without making mistakes that could lead to a jackknife, such as simultaneously braking while swerving.
Get the Best Tractor Trailer Accident Attorney Atlanta Can Provide
A tractor-trailer jackknife is a complex event, often involving multiple vehicles. Factors that cause a semi-truck to jackknife can include icy or wet roads, impact with another vehicle, braking too suddenly or incorrectly, improperly maintained tires or brakes, and more. At Durham Law Group, our Atlanta truck accident attorneys have the depth and breadth of experience necessary to settle or litigate a tractor-trailer jackknife accident. We know how to identify the cause of the crash and the party or parties responsible, reconstruct the accident if necessary, and locate crucial evidence, including records and logs that might be hidden or falsified by the truck driver or trucking company. We’ll work to settle your case or take it to a jury verdict as necessary to see you get the care and compensation you need after a serious truck accident in Atlanta.
Call Durham Law Group Attorneys for Help After an Atlanta Jackknife Truck Accident
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a tractor-trailer jackknife crash or other truck accident, call an Atlanta tractor-trailer accident lawyer at Durham Law Group at 404-845-3434 for a free consultation regarding your potential claims. There is no fee until we recover for you.