Driving A Truck With Rusted Brake Lines Could Present Serious Liabilities
Caring for a truck not only keeps you safe but doing so also helps protect others on the road. Driving with rusted brake lines does not contribute to anyone's safety, not the drivers, surrounding vehicles, or pedestrians. As the brake line corrosion spreads and deepens, the chances increase for brake fluid leaks. Once fluid leaks out, a driver can't stop the truck, as the brakes won't work. If a truck driver was aware of rusted brake lines and continued with deliveries, then they could face civil and, possibly, criminal liabilities. Depending on the circumstances of a brake-related accident, a truck driver could face significant punitive damages.
Blatant Negligence and Disregard for the Road
Did a mechanic warn the driver about the brake line's condition and strongly recommended to perform a replacement. If so, then it would be difficult for the driver to sidestep claims of negligence. Refusing to replace the brake lines and going on long-distance drives comes off as negligence of dramatic proportions. Excuses about intending to take the "truck off the road soon" won't work. Neither would fiscal concerns about paying to replace the brakes. The bottom line is the truck driver knowingly took a dangerous vehicle out on the road.
Concerns About Gross Negligence
Blatant disregard for others' safety could cast a truck driver into an enormously negative light. Accidents happen, and people do fail to care for vehicles diligently. Driving a truck that potentially could not stop, however, takes negligence to a whole different level. A jury may dramatically increase punitive awards in such situations. And other behavioral factors could contribute to award amounts, as well.
Driving Irresponsibly on Bad Brakes
Adding risky behavior to the next could further potential damage awards. Did the truck driver travel down a winding road, down a steep hill, or in another environment in which properly operating brakes are essential for safety? Driving on brakes likely to fail is bad enough. Driving the truck on treacherous terrain compounds the danger.
The Mechanic's Role
Sometimes, the blame also falls on the mechanic. Questions may arise about whether the truck driver relied on advice about the brake's condition. If a mechanic told the driver not to worry until the brakes started flaking or that they'd be fine for a few years, the mechanic might share in the negligence.
Ultimately, a personal injury attorney may seek damages against anyone contributing to the negligence. Persons injured in a truck accident might find seeking legal counsel worthwhile.
For more information, reach out to a truck accident attorney.