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Injured in a Truck Accident Caused by Defective Equipment: New Mexico 18 Wheeler Wreck Lawyers

Federal Rules and Liability Explained by New Mexico 18 Wheeler Wreck Lawyers: Injured in a Truck Accident Caused by Defective Equipment

It goes without saying that large commercial vehicles such as 18 wheelers, big rigs, tankers, box trucks, and other semi tractor trailers have a lot of mechanical parts.  They also have more of them.  Obviously the name “18 wheelers,” all trucks have a lot of wheels whether they have less or even more than 18 wheelers.  This also requires extensive braking systems and steering systems.  This means that trucking companies must work harder to keep these vehicles well-maintained.  While must of the trucking companies do that, unfortunately many trucking companies fail.  When a truck company fails to properly maintain their motor vehicle, innocent people may be injured in a truck accident caused by defective equipment.  

Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., our New Mexico 18 wheeler wreck lawyers know how devastating this can be for a victim.  When mechanical failures cause a large truck to become an unguided missile, innocent people could be catastrophically injured or wrongfully killed.  This means that victims could sustain serious personal injuries that affect their ability to enjoy life on a daily level, ability to work, and even their ability to live independently.  Learn what your rights may be after a truck driver causes you serious personal injuries due to defective equipment in a FREE consultation with our law firm.

Liability for a Truck Accident Caused by Defective Equipment

While New Mexico has strict statutes on the proper trucking equipment, and there are remedies under the common law (or judge-made law) for victims who are hurt by defective equipment, there is a federal agency which has really created very specific regulations that apply to trucks.  These rules and regulations are stricter and specifically tailored to commercial vehicles.  

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has promulgated these regulations to apply to trucking companies and truck drivers throughout the United States.  It does not matter what state a truck driver is from, going to, or driving in, the regulations provide a minimum requirement.  

When a truck driver violates a FMCSA, in addition to likely violating New Mexico law, the truck driver and the trucking company may be liable to any individual who is hurt by these violations.  The violation of an FMCSA can be used as evidence of negligence in a personal injury lawsuit.  This can help a victim proof his or her case.

Common FMCSA Violations for a Truck Accident Caused by Defective Equipment 

There are two reasons why an individual could be injured in a truck accident caused by defective equipment which may be due to an FMCSA violation.  Those areas are tires and brakes.  These two components can also turn a truck into a battering ram if not properly maintained.  

For tires, the FMCSA regulations under 49 CFR section 293.75 (a) prohibit a truck driver from operating a commercial vehicle which has any of these deformities:

  • Body ply or belt material exposed through the tread, or the part of the tire which makes contact with the tire, or on the sidewall
  • Tread or sidewall separation
  • Flat tires
  • Tires with an audible leak or sound of losing air
  • Cuts, damage, or other issues with any part of a tire which exposes ply or belt material, and
  • Any other defects to a tire.

For brakes, 49 CFR section 392.7 places a clear requirement that “[n]o commercial motor vehicle shall be driver unless the driver is satisfied that the following parts and accessories are in good working order, nor shall any driver fail to use or make use of such parts and accessories when and as needed[.]”  This section specifically includes service brakes, parking brake, steering mechanics, all trailer brake connections, and of course tires.  But the largest focus is all of the different types of brakes which must be properly maintained.  

Further, 49 CFR section 393.48 requires all 18 wheelers and other commercial vehicles to have operating brakes at the time of use.  And 49 CFR section 393.52 provides the requirements and guidelines for operating brakes, which include many important aspects and devices.  

Were you Injured in a New Mexico 18 Wheeler Wreck Due to Defective Equipment or Mechanics?  Call Us for Help Now

Defective equipment causing trucking accidents should not occur if a truck driver is properly maintaining, servicing, and inspecting his or her commercial vehicle.  However, all too often a truck driver causes a significant type of 18 wheeler wreck due to defective equipment which could cause catastrophic personal injuries or wrongful death.  If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a New Mexico 18 wheeler wreck, ask our experienced Albuquerque trucking accident lawyers at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. to schedule your FREE appointment by dialing (505) 883-5000.  

We handle causes throughout New Mexico, including Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, Cuervo, Rio Rancho, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Albuquerque where our office is located, and anywhere else throughout New Mexico.  Please call to schedule for FREE appointment by dialing (505) 883-5000 or contact us through our website’s easy to use and convenient contact box available here.

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