A jackknife accident occurs when a tractor-trailer or other large commercial vehicle skids and slides out of control, forming the shape of a folding pocket knife. Jackknife accidents can be incredibly dangerous, as the trailer may slide into oncoming traffic or off the side of the road. They are typically caused by driver error such as excessive speed, poor braking technique, or distracted driving.
In some cases weather conditions such as icy roads may also contribute to these types of accidents. The most common result is severe property damage and injuries to those involved in the collision. It is important for drivers to understand how to safely drive around large trucks in order to prevent jackknifing from occurring.
How Does a Jackknife Accident Happen?
A jackknife accident is a type of trucking accident where the cab and trailer of an articulated lorry fold into each other in a “V” shape. The force from the folding can cause serious injuries to anyone nearby, as well as significant damage to vehicles and property. Jackknifes are most commonly caused by sudden braking or turning, although they can also be triggered by slippery roads, wind gusts, overloaded trailers, or faulty brakes. In any case, these accidents are dangerous and should be avoided if possible.
To prevent jackknife accidents, truck drivers must take extra caution when turning or stopping. Drivers should always be aware of their surroundings and check for hazards before each turn or stop. They should also reduce speed gradually instead of abruptly braking, as sudden stops can cause the trailer to swerve and destabilize the entire vehicle.
Who Is at Risk In a Jackknife Accident?
A jackknife accident is a serious and potentially deadly situation, and anyone involved in the incident can be at risk. The most vulnerable parties are those who occupy the vehicles that are part of the crash. This includes drivers, passengers, bicyclists, and pedestrians in close proximity to where the collision has occurred. Because of their lack of protection from an airbag or seatbelt system, these individuals may suffer more severe injuries than those inside a vehicle during a jackknife accident. In addition to occupants of vehicles involved in the collision, other drivers on the road may also be at risk if they become caught up in it as well.