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CVSA and DOT to crackdown on defective truck brakes

Florida motorists often pay particular attention when in close proximity to large and heavy commercial vehicles. These trucks pose a serious threat to all road users when they are operated recklessly or inadequately maintained, and federal and state authorities work hard to ensure that trucks are safe and their drivers are properly rested and trained. The air-braking systems used by semi-tractor trailers are vital safety equipment, and defective brakes are the most common citation handed out at roadside truck checkpoints.

Operation Airbrake is a comprehensive campaign sponsored by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and the U.S. Department of Transportation. It is designed to educate truck operators and mechanics about the dangers of defective braking systems, and Sept. 6 through Sept. 12 has been designated Brake Safety Week. During the annual initiative, the braking systems of buses and trucks around the country will be inspected for defects such as worn pads or discs and leaking hoses or pipes.

The braking systems of semi-tractor trailers are often expected to function under extreme conditions, and this is particularly true in during the hot summer months in Florida. When these systems are not properly inspected and maintained, stopping distances may increase or brakes may fail completely. The braking systems of over 13,000 trucks and buses were checked during Brake Safety Week in 2014, and more than 3.4 million vehicles have been inspected since the program began in 1998.

The victims of truck accidents often suffer debilitating injuries and are unable to work for prolonged periods, and they may pursue civil remedies when the accident was caused by the negligence of another. Personal injury attorneys often file this type of lawsuit against fatigued, distracted or intoxicated truck drivers, but trucking companies may also be sued when accidents are caused by shoddy maintenance or poor driver supervision or training.

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