The tires on a truck have an important job to do: support the weight of a big rig weighing in excess of 80,000 pounds. In order to meet this demand, these tires must be built to last, constructed with sturdy, weather-worthy material that can withstand long distances. Unfortunately, however, tire manufacturers do not always live up to this responsibility. Nor do truck companies always do their due diligence in inspecting and maintaining truck tires for structural integrity.
In cases like these, a tire blowout may occur that can injure both the truck driver and anyone nearby the vehicle. Learn who may be held liable for damages in this situation.
Truck Tire Blowout Liability
Tire blowouts are preventable. This means that some party is responsible when they occur, whether the blowout was caused by poor design, manufacture, or maintenance. In general, one or more of the following parties may be held liable for a truck tire blowout:
The Truck Driver
Truck drivers have a duty of care to everyone else on the road to drive responsibly. If a truck driver was found to be drunk, drowsy, or otherwise impaired, and this contributed to a tire blowout, then the truck driver may be held liable for damages.
Additionally, the truck driver’s employer may also be held liable through the legal principle of “respondeat superior,” or vicarious liability. This principle states that an employer is liable for acts of employees performed within the course of their employment.
The Trucking Company
Even if the truck driver played no role in the tire blowout, the trucking company may still have liability for the incident.
Trucking companies must regularly maintain their fleets. This includes inspecting the vital components of the truck, including the engine, brakes, lighting system, and tires. If trucking companies do not stick to a regular inspection schedule or fail to implement the repairs the vehicle needs, and this negligence contributes to a subsequent tire blowout, then the trucking company may be held liable for damages.
The Tire Manufacturer
Sometimes, the trucking company and truck driver share no fault in a tire blowout. A situation may arise wherein the tires were defective before they even got into the trucking company’s inventory.
Manufacturers have a duty of care to design, create, and market their products in a manner that is safe for consumers’ use. A failure in any one of these areas may make the tire manufacturer liable for any subsequent blowouts under product liability law.
Injured in a Truck Accident? Contact Us Today
Truck accidents are complicated and require the guidance of a seasoned legal professional. At Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP, our attorneys have the experience and resources needed to investigate a truck accident and take on large corporations and their insurers. We have helped countless accident victims recover the compensation they need for medical bills, lost wages, and more. Learn how we may help you, too.
Call Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP at (800) 900-0863 to schedule a free consultation.