Semi-trucks pose a considerable danger to other road users if they experience a break failure. Their massive size and weight mean they need more time and space than passenger cars require to slow down or come to a stop. So when a truck’s brakes fail, the potential for a catastrophic accident increases dramatically.

The seasoned truck accident attorneys at Sam & Ash Injury Law have seen the devastating consequences of accidents caused by brake failure. We understand how physically, emotionally, and financially difficult life can be after suffering injuries in one of these collisions. Our lawyers will listen to your story and pursue any claim you may have. We want you to receive full and fair compensation. Contact us today for your free case review to learn how we can help you.

truck brake failure

What Is Truck Brake Failure?

A commercial truck’s braking system should be powerful and reliable enough to bring an 80,000-pound vehicle to a complete stop. Brake failure occurs when the system does not function as it should. This problem can happen due to improper maintenance, poor design, or defective parts.

The results of brake failure can be catastrophic and sometimes fatal. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) cites brake failure as one of the top 10 causes of tractor-trailer accidents.

Why Do Truck Brakes Fail?

A truck can experience brake failure for several reasons, including:


When a truck’s braking system is not correctly adjusted, one brake does not exert the same force as another. This imbalance can happen due to problems with the pneumatic system that applies air pressure to the brakes. Brake imbalances can often lead to jackknife accidents.


When truck brakes overheat, they operate less efficiently. As a result, truck drivers may experience brake fade and need more time and stopping distance to bring the big rig to a stop. In addition, improper maintenance and aggressive driving may cause overheated brakes.

Suspension Faults

Misconfigurations in the suspension system can cause the same problems as brake imbalances. Faulty suspension can stress the brakes unnecessarily, reducing the driver’s ability to control the vehicle’s speed.

Trailer Overload

The greater a truck’s weight, the more work its braking system must do to bring it to a stop. The FMSCA enforces maximum weight regulations for this reason. Overloading a truck, even on a single occasion, can strain its brakes enough to cause failure.

Brake Tube Chafing or Kinking

Air brakes require the pneumatic tubes to be clear if the system is to function correctly. The brakes can fail if a rubber or thermoplastic hose becomes kinked.

Inadequate Lubrication

The various components of a braking system require lubrication before and after a harsh winter. A lack of adequate lubrication can accelerate the wear and tear on a truck’s brakes.

Common Injuries Caused by Truck Brake Failure

All truck accidents can cause harm to other road users. The nature of brake failure means that these types of accidents often occur at high speed, increasing the possibility of severe injuries, including:

Truck accidents resulting from brake failure can be fatal. Suppose you have lost a loved one in a truck accident. In that case, the experienced truck accident lawyers at Sam & Ash Injury Law can file a wrongful death claim to hold the trucking company financially accountable. We know that no amount of money can fill the void you are experiencing. But your family should not experience financial hardship because of the loss of your loved one’s support for the household. A truck accident settlement can compensate for funeral costs, lost financial support, and the pain and suffering you have experienced due to the at-fault party’s negligence.

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Who Is Liable for a Semi-Truck Brake Failure?

Determining who is liable for a truck accident can be challenging due to the number of parties that may be involved. Our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to investigate the collision, determine who is at fault, and hold the at-fault parties accountable. Liability may fall on the following:

  • The trucking company ‒ Trucking companies are responsible for inspecting their vehicles regularly and ensuring that they receive proper maintenance. You have the right to file a claim against a company that has failed to meet these obligations.
  • The truck driver ‒ Truckers must employ proper braking techniques when operating their vehicles. Before each trip, they must inspect their vehicle to ensure that all mechanical components function correctly. If a truck driver’s misuse or negligence led to the brake system failure, you could hold them accountable for your losses.
  • Repair shops ‒ Mechanics should thoroughly inspect a truck’s braking system for potential problems. It may be financially liable if a truck maintenance garage neglects to diagnose or fix a brake issue that led to your accident.
  • Brake manufacturers and designers ‒ The responsible company may become an at-fault party if a manufacturing flaw leads to a braking failure and accident.

Regulations Regarding Brake Maintenance

The FMCSA has strict guidelines about inspecting, repairing, and maintaining motor vehicles and their components. These regulations require all motor carriers to ensure that their trucks are in safe operating condition. In addition, trucking companies must maintain the relevant inspection, maintenance, and repair records for at least one year.

A commercial truck’s brakes are subject to inspection by a qualified brake inspector who can attest that the braking system meets specified stopping distance standards. Any trucking company that fails to adhere to these standards can be held liable for resulting accident-related losses.

Proving Negligence and Fault in a Truck Brake Failure Accident

One of the most significant challenges in filing a truck accident claim is that the various at-fault parties involved tend to have aggressive legal teams attempting to shift the blame to you or someone else. Our seasoned attorneys are aware of these tactics. Therefore, we will demand the compensation you deserve so you can focus on recovering from your injuries.

When you retain the attorneys at Sam & Ash Injury Law, we will investigate the causes of the accident that led to your injuries. We want to get a full accounting of the facts of the accident and your injuries. Our investigation will include the following:

  • Visiting the site of the accident to collect evidence
  • Obtaining inspection, maintenance, and repair records from the trucking company and repair shops
  • Requesting data from the vehicle’s on-board electronic recorder
  • Reviewing brake designer and manufacturer records to determine whether there have been other instances of braking system flaws from their products
  • Interviewing eyewitnesses who were at the scene of the crash

Once we have gathered the relevant information, we can confidently know what a proper settlement would look like as we present your claim to the at-fault party’s insurer.

Filing a Semi Brake Failure Lawsuit

The insurer may refuse what we believe to be a fair settlement. If this happens, the best way to pursue the compensation you deserve may be to file a truck accident lawsuit.

You will be disadvantaged if your legal team lacks courtroom experience when it’s necessary to go to court to demand justice.

The legal team at Sam & Ash injury law thrives in a courtroom environment and has a record of success. We have recovered more than $400 million on behalf of our clients. In addition, our familiarity with the civil court system will enable us to present a persuasive case to the court if settlement negotiations break down and your case proceeds to trial.

Contact Our Las Vegas Truck Accident Attorneys

If you have suffered injuries in a brake failure truck accident in Nevada, you deserve fair compensation for your losses. These losses may include medical expenses, lost income due to missed work, property damage, and the pain and suffering you have experienced. In addition, if you have lost a loved one, you may hold the at-fault party accountable in a wrongful death action.

Filing a truck accident claim is a complicated undertaking. However, you will benefit from experienced legal guidance. Let the personal injury attorneys at Sam & Ash Injury Law stand up on your behalf while you recover from your injuries.

Sam & Ash Injury Law has helped thousands of injured people demand justice. We will pursue your rights and interests throughout the claims process. You pay us only if we win. Our fee is based on the amount we win.

Contact us today for a free case review to learn more about your legal options.


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