When you hear about a truck accident in Florida, you may think that the accident was caused by driver error. However, it is just as likely that a truck accident was the result of a defective part on the truck that should have been found if the truck was properly maintained. Truck inspections, maintenance, and repairs are so essential that federal regulations mandate them. However, many trucking companies and truck drivers fail to follow these federal rules. This can result in tragic accidents that may involve serious injury or death.
Federal Regulations Regarding Truck Maintenance
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration(FMCSA) has detailed regulations regarding truck inspections, maintenance, and repairs that drivers and trucking companies must abide by. It is required that all truck drivers and trucking companies be familiar with these regulations. These regulations require drivers and companies to:
- “systematically inspect, repair, and maintain, or cause to be systematically inspected, repaired, and maintained” all trucks within their control. This regulation is put in place to ensure that all parts and components of the truck are in good working order and safe for driving.
- Ensure that no truck is put on the road if it is in a condition that is likely to cause the breakdown of a truck or an accident
- Ensure that any truck that is in a condition that will likely cause an accident, or a breakdown of the truck be marked “out of service” and not operate trucks with an “out of service” sticker on them until all repairs have been completed
- Perform pre-trip inspections to ensure that trucks are in a safe condition and that loads are secured
- Complete an inspection of each truck at the end of every work day and prepare written reports documenting any defect or deficiency in the truck
Trucking companies are required to keep detailed records regarding any truck that it owns, leases, or operates.
What is Required to be Inspected
FMCSA regulations mandate what the truck driver is required to inspect on a daily basis. This includes:
- Steering mechanism
- Reflectors and light
- Wheels and rims
- Windshield wipers
- Coupling equipment
- Emergency equipment
What Can Go Wrong
If a truck is not adequately maintained or inspected, problems with the truck can lead to a severe accident. Improper maintenance and lack of inspection can lead to:
- Problems with the brake system
- Problems with headlights and brake lights
- Worn tires
- Faulty turn signals
Any of these issues can lead to a serious accident. If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, you should have an attorney evaluate your case. Contact the trusted lawyers at Abrahamson & Uiterwyk onlineor call us at 1-800-753-5203 to schedule your free consultation.