Pennsylvania Route 12 is a smaller highway in the state covering a mere 9 miles through Berks County in eastern Pennsylvania. This road begins at U.S Route 222 and ends at a junction with Pennsylvania Route 662 in Ruscombmanor Township. While this road may not cut across the state as other state routes do, Pennsylvania Route 12 is a four-lane freeway, which is sometimes called the Warren Street Bypass. Along with being a four-lane highway this road intersects with several other roads including Pennsylvania 183, Pennsylvania 61, and U.S 222.
If you have been in an accident on Pennsylvania Route 12 then you need an experienced team of attorneys at your side. The attorney’s of Reiff Law Firm’s The Truck Accident Team have over 100 years of combined award-winning experience in representing innocent victims who were catastrophically injured or killed in truck accidents.
Vehicle Defects Leading to Truck Accidents
Trucks are complicated pieces of machinery. This means that it if these vehicles are not maintained properly it can lead to accidents. In 2015, some of the most significant vehicle maintenance issues that lead to accidents included:
- Tire and wheel related issues – Running for thousands of miles on Pennsylvania roads can wear your tires down. Tractor-trailer tires must be changed often in order to maintain sufficient traction and control, however, often drivers and their companies will ignore worn tires in an effort to meet deadlines.
- Brake-related – Truck drivers will drive hundreds of thousands of miles in a single year. This means that over the course of a year there is substantial wear and tear on the brakes of their massive vehicles. If a truck driver needs to stop quickly and their brakes are not in proper working order it is likely that they will not be able to bring their vehicle to a stop in time to avoid an accident.
- Unsecured/shifted trailer loads – The cargo in the back of a tractor-trailer must be loaded in a precise manner to ensure that the contents not only are delivered in their proper condition but also so that the contents do not shift. When cargo is not properly secured and subsequently moves in the back of a tractor-trailer it can cause the driver to lose control over their vehicle, or for the trailer to swing out of control. According to reports from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, there were over 50 accidents on Pennsylvania roads involving large trucks that were attributed to the truck’s cargo shifting.
Truck drivers and their companies are often in a rush to meet delivery deadlines. However, this does not excuse them from their duty to inspect and repair their vehicles. All commercial trucks are required to meet safety standards established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration prior to them operating on the roads. However, often times an inspection of the companies’ repair logs reveal that their vehicle did not meet these standards. If you were in a tractor-trailer accident on Pennsylvania Route 12 because of a poorly maintained truck, contact one of our attorneys today.
Who is Liable for a Truck Accident?
Truck accidents are often not only more factually complex accidents but also legally complex accidents. That is because when you are involved in an accident with another passenger vehicle it is most likely that the other driver will be solely responsible. However, when you have been in an accident with a tractor-trailer there may be other parties who are also equally as responsible for the accident.
Most personal injury cases are based on a theory of negligence that is the driver or other responsible party/parties had a duty to conform to the laws, they breached that duty through their actions, and because of their breach, you were injured. Negligent or careless acts such as speeding, driving under the influence, or texting and driving may impose liability on the driver themselves, however, the driver’s company, the equipment manufacturer, or even the truck’s manufacturer may be partially liable for your accident. Some of the liable parties for a truck accident might include:
- The truck driver
- The driver’s employer
- The truck owner
- The company who leased the truck
- The company whose goods are being delivered
- The truck’s mechanic
Truck owners and operators must meet both state and federal safety standards to ensure that their own safety, as well as the safety of others, is being met. If you have been injured in a truck accident you need to engage in an early and thorough review of all the parties who may be responsible for the accidents.