A jackknife accident occurs when a towing vehicle skids and the driver can’t correct the vehicle’s trajectory. The skidding action results in the trailer swimming out to the side. Eventually, this momentum will create a 90-degree angle between the trailer and the cab. This type of accident causes an array of dangers. For example, the trailer may hit another vehicle as it swings out. Also, it may cross several lanes of traffic, causing multiple accidents as vehicles try to avoid it or stop.
How Dangerous is a Jackknife Accident?
There’s no question that jackknife accidents are very dangerous. A recent study from the NHTSA showed that approximately 10 percent of all accident-related fatalities are related to a jackknife accident. This is especially noteworthy considering that the FMCSA has stated that just five percent of large truck accidents are because of jackknifing. This means the frequency of a fatality during a jackknife accident is double how often they occur.
Common Injuries from a Jackknife Accident
A jackknife accident can cause an injury to the truck driver, along with any vehicles nearby when the incident occurs. Some of the most common injuries that occur include the following:
Traumatic Brain and Head Injuries
Any time a vehicle is traveling at a higher speed when it collides with another vehicle, the risk of a head injury is high. Usually, occupants will strike their head on an item in the vehicle or are ejected from it. Common head injuries include lacerations, brain injuries, and skull fractures.
Spinal Cord and Neck Injuries
Because of the force exerted on your body, the occurrence of spinal cord and neck injuries is also common. This includes slipped discs, nerve damage, herniated discs, and whiplash.
Broken bones are likely during a high-impact event, like this. Treatment for these may be surgery and extensive physical therapy.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Your body will likely take a beating during a jackknife accident. This includes pulled muscles, torn ligaments, and bruising.
Receiving Recovery for Injuries
After you have taken care of your immediate health concerns, you may wonder what options you have for recovery. After all, many of the injuries listed above may result in lifelong problems. This is going to require ongoing care and serious costs.
Dealing with the injuries is an ongoing process and usually an expensive one. At this point, you should gather information about the accident and hire an attorney to help you build a case. It is important to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. This will allow you to recover compensation to help you pay for the ongoing treatment you need for the injuries you suffered.
There is no question that jackknife accidents can result in devastating injuries. Dealing with the lifelong impact of these injuries isn’t something you have to do alone – especially if the accident that occurred was the fault of someone else. Take action to get the compensation you deserve so you can receive the ongoing care you need.