California law generally requires all vehicle owners to adequately maintain their vehicles. Failure to do so could result in a variety of penalties such as fines or a loss of driving privileges. In some cases, truck owners who fail to maintain their vehicles may be deemed liable for any accidents that they are involved in.
It can be easy for busy workers, shop owners or fleet owners to lose track of when their vehicles were last inspected. However, reading the manuals that come with them can give drivers, owners and other parties a good idea as to when oil changes, tire rotations and other tasks should be completed.
As a general rule, failing to closely adhere to manufacturer recommendations can be grounds for voiding a warranty. It can also be used to justify your claim that the truck driver who caused the crash was negligent for causing it to happen.
Even if a truck is properly maintained, it doesn’t mean that a problem can’t develop without warning. Fortunately, sensors within the vehicle can alert a driver to tire, engine or other issues before they cause an accident. If a driver ignores those lights, he or she might be held liable for any accident that person is involved in.
Ideally, a truck will be inspected for signs of damage before they leave a warehouse, truck stop or any other location. This may make it possible to avoid a flat tire, engine oil leak or another defect that could increase the risk of motor vehicle accidents occurring.
If you are struck by a truck that was not properly maintained, you may be entitled to compensation. An attorney may be able to help you obtain a financial award through a negotiated settlement or at trial. If necessary, your legal representative may also represent your interests during the appeal process.