Every driver in Nevada is expected to keep up maintenance on their vehicle. In fact, if a crash happens because you failed to keep up your car, then you’re the one found at fault. So what happens when truckers don’t maintain their vehicles?
Imagine on a truck you’re not worried about reaching the 100,000-mile marker. Truckers see that happen often. Instead, Big Rigs can often go far past 750,000 miles and often will have an engine or transmission replaced before putting the truck out to pasture. Maintenance of these huge vehicles is mandatory, but who’s responsible for it and who is responsible when a truck accident occurs?
Are Truckers Responsible for Maintenance?
While truckers are responsible for keeping a good driving history, punctuality, and safe travel. But that’s not all they have to do. Often they get stuck loading and unloading cargo, helping with warehouse workers, changing trailers, and maintaining their truck.
Maintaining their truck falls under some of their outlying responsibilities for two reasons—personal comfort and road safety. However, truckers aren’t mechanics, and many don’t own their trucks. The personal comfort element does play into road safety because if a trucker is distracted with a rattling or ticking, it’s likely to lead to a wreck.
Then road safety is an obvious point. If you’re on the freeway and your hood has smoke billowing out, then something is wrong. Truckers do have to go through and perform basic inspections of their vehicle to ensure that there aren’t obvious and immediate road hazards.
Can Mechanics Be Held Liable If Something Goes Wrong?
Mechanics could become liable for some types of truck accidents if they were clearly negligent. Of course, proving that is a mechanic’s fault is more than a chore. It’s near impossible. However, if you had records of a problem with one mechanic repeatedly ignoring that problem or not acknowledging a necessary repair, it could be an option. Often, however, what will happen is that you’ll file a claim against the trucker’s employer or the trucker directly.
Then that trucker will tell their insurance provider or liability legal team that the mechanic failed to perform their duty. Then an investigation would ensue, and it may turn up to be nothing at all. Most of the time that the trucking company wants to pin the liability on a mechanic; it’s to stall for time because they don’t want to move forward.
Why Do Truckers Inspect Their Trucks If They’re Not Mechanics?
Maintaining a big rig is expensive. So often, companies that own their trucks want to know about needed repairs right away. Keeping track of these issues demands ongoing attention, and they simply can’t get these rigs into a shop that often. Instead, it’s on the drivers to fill out a gripe sheet. Rattles, weird pulls, and unusual tire wear are just a few of the many things they look out for in an inspection.
Other people perform inspections on these trucks as well. At weigh stations, it’s common for inspectors to listen for rattles, check lights, and more. Additionally, police officers can pull over truckers and ask to go through an inspection. One reason that officers can do this is that they may notice movement in a tire, or with the trailer that shouldn’t happen. It’s the best way that officers can help reduce on-the-road truck accidents.
Documenting Issues and Traffic Incidences That Follow
When truckers document issues and then a traffic accident follows, it opens up a lot of doors. It’s critical that although they’re not directly responsible for completing the maintenance, they’re a vital part of the maintenance plan. Their gripe sheets, inspections, and even getting the truck to the mechanic are responsibilities that fall to them. It’s imperative for everyone on the road that truckers go through these motions.
Call Up a Las Vegas Truck Accident Lawyer For Help
We’re here for you whenever you need support in resolving a truck accident. Las Vegas certainly sees a fair share of truckers come through town, and sometimes they bring with them terrible wrecks. Often the accidents happen because of driver error, but there are many other times when the crash was avoidable. Proper maintenance is the responsibility of every driver. But, truckers fall into a grey area.
Talk to our firm today to help expose who is responsible for the mechanical failure that caused you to crash. It could be the driver, company, or most recent mechanic. Contact the Nettles | Morris Law Firm nestled in the heart of Las Vegas for support and guidance after your tragedy.