What Are Jackknife Accidents? 

When an accident causes a truck with two separate points to fold in on itself at the point of separation, it is sometimes termed a “jackknife” accident. The cab and trailer form a 90-degree “V” shape by swiveling at the point where they are linked together. The swiveling effect looks like the effect of folding a pocket knife, hence the “jackknife” accident. If you have been involved in a jackknife accident or have questions about accidents in general, you should talk to a personal injury lawyer in los angeles today. 

Damages and causes of jackknife accidents 

Trucks are extremely heavy and huge. For this reason, any kind of accident involving trucks can be catastrophic. Commercial vehicles may weigh up to 80,000 pounds on interstate highways and pull 28-foot double trailers – which is a lot of weight. 

A jackknife accident can cause intense personal injuries and a lot of destruction and can even result in casualties. According to some statistics, jackknife accidents make up nearly five percent of all truck accidents. 

Some situations you should be aware of that can cause jackknife accidents are: 

  • Overspeeding 

Large trucks are extremely difficult to stop at once, especially if traveling at over 55 mph. The higher the speed, the higher the likelihood of the trailer swinging out of control. 

  • Curves 

Slight curves are rarely a problem for commercial trucks. It is the steep curves that the truck drivers should be worried about. If the curve is steep and the trailer is huge, there is a higher chance that the trailer may swing out of control. 

  • Inclement weather conditions or slippery roads 

Loss of traction between the truck and the road can cause the entire truck to slide, and with the sheer weight and size of trucks, even a small slide can lead to a jackknife accident. 

  • Negligence or equipment malfunction 

Break failure, hydraulic failure, driver error, or negligence can lead to jackknife accidents as well. 

How can a driver prevent jackknife accidents? 

There are certain things truck drivers can do to prevent jackknife accidents. These are: 

  • Going through a proper training program 
  • Checking the road conditions ahead of time 
  • Turning with caution 
  • Properly maintaining their truck 
  • Never driving if their senses are impaired 

Schedule a legal consultation today. 

You should always go to a professional if you find yourself in need of any kind of legal help. Schedule a consultation with a skilled and experienced attorney today and get the legal help you deserve. 


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