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Tractor-Trailer Tire Rupture: Who Is Liable?


When a tractor-trailer accident occurs on Florida’s roads, it can cause major traffic problems and significant injury, both for those involved and possibly for bystanders. While every crash is different, those that happen due to mechanical failures can be among the most dangerous. Truck tire blowouts are one of the most common causes of accidents for these vehicles, but if you have been injured in this type of crash, it can be difficult to determine just who should be liable for your injuries.

Serious Injuries Are Likely

Accidents that involve truck tire blowouts can be among the most serious in terms of injury or fatality, because the trajectory of a tractor-trailer altering so rapidly makes the vehicle unpredictable. There may be mere seconds for another driver or bystander to get out of the way, and many simply do not succeed in getting out of the way. Between the stored energy and the heavy weight of these vehicles, injuries and death are even more likely than in a crash involving two passenger automobiles.

There are many different potential causes for tire blowouts, with only some of them relating to issues on the road. Hazards like potholes may precipitate an accident, but in addition, factors like negligent maintenance, a defective tire, or an overburdened vehicle can play major roles. Liability will hinge on establishing the exact cause of the accident – if at all possible – so gathering as much evidence as possible is crucial.

Many Possible Defendants

When a crash occurs due to a tire blowout, the most important thing to understand about the situation is that there may be multiple parties that bear a share of the liability. The average person would immediately place the burden on the shoulders of the tractor-trailer’s driver, but depending on the facts of your situation, others may be on the proverbial hook as well. For example, it is not out of the realm of possibility for a tire to be manufactured with an inherent defect – and if this is the case, it is the manufacturer who will be liable, rather than the driver.

Be advised that it is not only possible, but common, to bring suit against multiple defendants if there is reason to believe that liability can be laid at their doors. One common scenario in tractor-trailer accidents is to hold the tractor-trailer driver’s employer liable under a theory known as vicarious liability, where an employer can be held responsible for the torts (essentially, civil crimes) committed by their employees. However, an employee must have been acting within the scope of their employment in order for their employer to be vicariously liable. Determining whether or not this is the case can be difficult, but not impossible.

Call A Tampa Tractor-Trailer Accident Attorney

Tractor-trailer accidents can happen for many different reasons, but if a tire blowout happens, it can make a bad accident far worse. A Tampa tractor-trailer accident attorney from the Rinaldo Law Group can help protect your rights while you focus on getting life back to normal. Call our office today at (813) 831-9999 for a free consultation.

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