Does Vehicle Maintenance Play a Factor in Causes of Accidents?
Yes. Keep in mind that all drivers owe a legal duty of care to keep all other road users safe. This duty involves taking reasonable steps to prevent endangering others, which includes ensuring that they maintain and repair their vehicles regularly. Drivers who fail to maintain their vehicles regularly may be held responsible for any injuries and losses if their actions cause an accident.
When Can a Driver Be Held Liable for Poor Vehicle Maintenance?
Routine maintenance is just one component of caring for your car. It is likewise your responsibility to monitor your car for unexpected issues that could crop up. Drivers who do not address signs of potential malfunctions or issues can be held accountable for an accident that causes injuries and related damages.
When a driver operates a poorly maintained, hence, potentially dangerous vehicle, they are not only endangering their life but the lives of other road users as well. These include their passengers, the passengers and drivers of other vehicles, pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists. This means that if you suffer injuries in a car crash involving poor vehicle maintenance, you may have a valid claim against the negligent driver and/or vehicle owner.
For example, if the vehicle owner neglected to inspect and maintain their brakes regularly and they cause a crash because their brakes failed to work, then they can be held liable for the crash. Remember, the law requires all drivers to exercise reasonable care to prevent endangering anyone they share the road with, and this includes ensuring that their vehicles are always in safe working condition.
A driver that falls short of how any reasonable individual who would’ve acted under the same conditions may be considered to have violated their legal duty of care to others. But as the injured victim, you must prove that the driver’s negligence caused or contributed to your injuries.
How Do You Know If Your Vehicle Requires Maintenance?
When in doubt, follow the instructions and maintenance schedule of your vehicle manufacturer. Check the owner’s manual for specific maintenance schedules, including changing the oil and checking and replacing fluids. It’s likewise reasonable to expect that drivers must know when they should:
- Check their tires for alignment, tread, and pressure.
- Inspect the functionality and wear of their brakes.
- Repair chips or cracks in the windshield right away.
- Have all their lights checked, including headlamps, taillights, brake lights, and turn signals.
Being diligent about routine vehicle maintenance will help drivers prevent major issues with their vehicles, particularly if they have older vehicles.
Talk to an Experienced Cumming Car Accident Lawyer Now
If you or a loved one was hurt in a crash because of another driver’s failure to regularly maintain their vehicle, you might be entitled to pursue compensation for your injuries. The Cumming car accident lawyers of Banks, Stubbs & McFarland LLP can determine whether you have a claim against the driver that injured you. Call 770-887-1209 or fill out our online form to arrange your free case review and learn more about your legal options.