What to Do in a Jackknife Truck Accident

What Is a Jackknife Truck Accident?

A jackknife truck accident occurs when the wheels of large trailer truck suddenly lock, causing it to lose control. The trailer bed continues to move forward with more force than the vehicle towing it. As a result, the trailer pushes past the towing-truck, causing it to swing like a hinge about the towing joint’s axis into a steep angle, resulting in the towing-truck is facing backward. In other instances, instead of the towing vehicle facing backward, the trailer swings forward to the right or left of the towing vehicle, sweeping across the road and sometimes into opposing traffic. The sweeping motion resembles that of a folding jackknife.

What Causes Jackknife Accidents?

The design and weight of a trailer truck predispose it to jackknife accidents. The conditions that result in a jackknife accident mainly involve a sudden change in speed, which can cause the momentum of the trailer to exceed that of the towing vehicle. There are a variety of different factors that can cause these types of accidents.

Factors that can lead to a jackknifing accident include:

  • Malfunctioning brakes
  • High speeds
  • Slippery road conditions
  • Sudden maneuvers
  • Sharp turns

What Should You Do After a Jackknife Accident?

Due to the large mass of a jackknifing truck and the potential presence of dangerous cargo , any resulting accident bears a high risk of severe injury or even death. You should immediately call 911 after getting into an accident with a large truck. After emergency responders arrive at the scene of the crash, follow their directions. If you or any passengers riding with you are injured, seek medical attention immediately.

Once emergency responders ensure it is safe, try to collect as much information as possible. The names and contact information of the investigating police department, the truck driver, and any witnesses will be crucial for evidentiary and investigatory purposes. License plates and insurance information are also important to know.

Even if you or your passengers think you’ve only sustained minor injuries, schedule an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. Sometimes injuries aren’t symptomatic until days after an accident.

Consult a Seasoned New Orleans Auto Accident Attorney

After you have completed the above steps, contact a qualified attorney who has experience handling auto accident cases. At The Womac Law Firm, we have dedicated over 30 years of our practice to the litigation of personal injury cases, including truck accident cases involving large corporate defendants and insurance companies. You can rely on our skill and sophisticated understanding of the law to help you recover a fair settlement award to which you are entitled under the law.

Call The Womac Law Firm at (504) 470-3935 or contact us online to schedule a free initial case evaluation today!


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