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How can truck drivers avoid jackknifing?

A jackknifing semi truck is terrifying for other drivers. It's completely out of control, it can take up the entire roadway, and numerous vehicles can all be drawn into the same accident.

So, what can drivers do to avoid jackknifing and protect others? Below are a few critical tips from industry experts:

1. Don't hammer the brakes.

Braking should always be done in a gradual, controlled manner. Drivers must keep their eyes ahead of them and do all they can to avoid braking urgently.

2. Don't skid.

Naturally, there are situations where truck drivers have to skid, such as when an accident is imminent ahead of them. However, as much as possible, they should stop braking when they feel the truck start skidding. They can then get back under control and resuming braking.

3. Be wary of danger zones.

For example, trucks may jackknife more easily if the vehicle is heading down a hill or going through a tight curve.

4. Watch the trailer.

A trailer may start to sway and move before a driver loses all control. Keeping an eye on it in the mirror may alert the driver to trouble before an accident.

5. Do vehicle maintenance.

Drivers must know that their vehicles are always in good condition. This includes every part of the truck, but it's especially important to check the brakes.

Where you hit by a jackknifing truck, and do you think the driver ignored these tips and negligently caused the accident? If so, you may be able to seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and more.

Source: Union Test Prep, "How To Avoid a Jackknife," accessed May 25, 2017

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Ben Schmitt

Attorney Ben Schmitt

Mr. Schmitt has over 25 years of legal experience in Missouri and Kansas, and he has been first chair in over 100 jury trials in state and federal courts. He is recognized by the Kansas City Business Journal, Super Lawyers, and Martindale Hubbell as one of the best personal injury lawyers in Missouri and Kansas.