Jackknifing is one of the most dangerous things that can happen on a highway. When a jackknife occurs, the driver of a truck loses control of the trailer. The trailer swings wide, crossing lanes of traffic and blocking them. This sometimes leads to the truck crashing onto its side.
Jackknifing doesn’t often happen because most drivers are taught what to do to drive out of them or to correct them. However, if a driver truly loses control, this type of mistake could cost multiple people their lives or lead to many injuries.
What causes jackknifing?
Jackknifing is caused by skidding trucks. It’s possible to jackknife when turning if there is too much acceleration. It’s also possible if a truck has to stop quickly, but the trailer has too much momentum at an angle. Jackknifing is common around curves and in slippery road conditions, like those that are found in winter.
How can truck drivers avoid jackknifing?
The best thing drivers can do is to make sure that they’re educated in correcting their vehicles when the trailer begins to slide out of place. They should learn to brake gradually, not all at once, and they need to manage their loads carefully.
Proper maintenance of the vehicle can also help, since uneven brakes or worn-out tires may also increase the risk of a jackknife accident.
If you are in a crash as a result of a jackknifing truck, don’t forget that you can seek a claim. Your injuries are likely a result of mistakes or malfunctions, and the driver should be held responsible.