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Jackknife Accident Attorneys

Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati Personal Injury Attorneys for Jackknife Truck Accident Victims

Large commercial vehicles usually consist of a cab and a trailer, which are connected in a way that allows the cab to move somewhat independently of the trailer. However, when trucks turn too sharply, or the truck driver loses control of the vehicle, the truck bed and trailer can fold in on themselves like a folding pocket knife. This is referred to as a “jackknife” accident.

Jackknife accidents can cause serious damage to other vehicles on the road, not to mention serious and sometimes fatal injuries to other drivers and vehicle occupants. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a jackknife accident, you may be able to seek financial compensation for your losses. The Ohio and Northern Kentucky truck accident attorneys at TLF: The Medical Injury Law Firm can evaluate your eligibility and help you file a jackknife accident lawsuit for your damages.

Call us toll-free at (800) 698-4054 or reach out online to schedule a free consultation with an experienced truck accident attorney on our team today. 

jackknife accident

What Does it Mean When a Truck Jackknifes?

Most semi-trucks and other commercial vehicles are designed in a way where the cab and the trailer are connected at a pivot point, allowing the tractor-trailer to make sharper turns than it would otherwise. Unfortunately, certain situations can cause the cab and trailer to move in different directions, causing the cab and trailer to fold together at a 90-degree angle, making a “V” shape when viewed from above. 

When the trailer and cab turn in different directions like this, it can force the vehicle to come to a complete stop, which can be incredibly dangerous for others on the road. This is what is commonly referred to as a jackknife truck accident.

Types of Jackknife Accidents

Jackknife accidents can be classified into two main types: “plow out” and “spin out” accidents. Below, we’ll go into detail about the different types of jackknife accidents a semi-truck can get into. 

Plow Out

“Plow out” jackknife accidents occur when the trailer of a truck loses traction and skids forward past the cab. This causes the trailer to push, or plow, past the cab, forcing it to the side. This creates more of a straight-line trajectory, rather than causing the trailer to swing out and around the cab like a typical jackknifing truck. This is often caused by understeering through a curve.

Spin Out

In contrast, a “spin out” jackknife accident occurs when the trailer of a truck loses traction and spins around while the cab continues moving forward in its original direction. This results in the trailer rotating uncontrollably, potentially blocking multiple lanes of traffic and creating hazardous road conditions for other vehicles. These kinds of jackknife truck accidents are often caused by oversteering through a curve.

Kentucky jackknife truck accident attorney

When is a Truck Most Likely to Jackknife?

There are a number of different situations that can make it likely for a truck to jackknife. Individually, they may not cause a truck to jackknife, but together, they can greatly increase the risk of a jackknife accident and potentially serious injuries.

Braking Issues

Many jackknife accidents occur as a result of braking issues, especially during sudden or hard braking situations. When the truck’s braking force exceeds the traction capacity of the tires, it can cause the trailer to lose traction and swing out of control, which can lead to a jackknife accident. This can occur due to mechanical failures, like worn brake pads, or driver errors, like improper braking techniques.

Poor Road or Weather Conditions

Jackknife accidents can also be caused by adverse road or weather conditions, like heavy rain, snow, ice, or fog. Reduced traction on slippery surfaces increases the likelihood of the trailer losing control during braking or maneuvering, increasing the risk of jackknife truck accidents. Additionally, poor visibility and unpredictable road conditions further exacerbate the risk of these kinds of accidents.


Another common cause of truck accidents is excessive speeding. When trucks travel at high speeds, it reduces the amount of time drivers have to respond to sudden obstacles or changes in road conditions. Higher speeds can also amplify the effects of braking forces, increasing the likelihood of traction loss and subsequent jackknife incidents. 

Ohio jackknife truck accident attorney

Equipment Failure

Trucks are even more susceptible to jackknife accidents when equipment failures occur, such as brake system malfunctions, tire blowouts, or steering mechanism issues. These equipment failures can compromise the truck driver’s ability to maintain control of the vehicle, especially during braking or any sudden maneuvers. 

Truck Driver Error

Jackknife accidents also often result from truck driver errors, such as improper braking, oversteering, or inadequate response to changing road conditions. When truck drivers fail to adjust their driving behavior to factors like speed, weather, or cargo weight, it can increase their likelihood of experiencing a jackknife incident.

Overloaded/Improperly Loaded Cargo

Improperly loaded or overloaded cargo can also increase the likelihood of a jackknife accident. Exceeding weight limits or unevenly distributing cargo can affect the truck’s balance and stability, making it more difficult to control, especially during braking or turning maneuvers. 

jackknife truck accident attorney

Consequences of Jackknife Truck Accidents

Jackknife accidents rarely just affect the truck driver; they often cause serious accidents with other vehicles on the road. When a massive truck trailer swings across multiple lanes of traffic, it can hit other motorists on the road or can cause other vehicles to crash into the side of the trailer. Additionally, when a truck suddenly jackknifes, other vehicles nearby may be unable to brake fast enough to avoid the truck, which can result in a serious, devastating accident.

Due to the size and weight of most commercial trucks, jackknife truck accidents can cause extensive property damage to other vehicles, as well as serious, sometimes incapacitating injuries to other drivers and occupants. Unfortunately, some jackknife truck accident victims suffer from fatal injuries, which can have a permanent effect on the victim’s family and loved ones. 

Given the serious nature of these accidents, victims and/or their families often suffer from serious financial, emotional, and physical stress. Luckily, victims can seek compensation for their various losses in a personal injury lawsuit. While compensation can’t undo the accident, it can help victims move past the accident and continue to live their lives, even after a devastating injury or accident fatality


Legal Rights After a Jackknife Accident

When jackknife accidents happen, victims have the legal right to pursue compensation for their damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage. Victims also have the right to seek legal representation from an experienced truck accident lawyer in their area, who can help them file a personal injury claim for their losses.

Who is Liable for a Jackknife Truck Accident?

There are many potential factors that can contribute to a jackknife truck accident, but at the end of the day, who is responsible for a commercial truck accident? There are many different individuals who can be liable for a jackknife accident, including:

  • Truck drivers
  • Trucking companies
  • Truck manufacturers
  • Cargo loading personnel
  • Local government entities
  • Other drivers

A motor vehicle accident lawyer will be able to investigate the circumstances of the accident and help determine who is liable for damages. Whether it’s the truck driver, the trucking company, the company responsible for maintaining the truck, the manufacturer that designed the truck, or the local government responsible for maintaining the roads, they’ll be able to determine which party or parties hold responsibility for the accident and resulting damages.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a jackknife truck accident, contact an experienced semi-truck accident attorney at TLF today. We can help determine who caused your accident and pursue maximum compensation from the responsible party or parties.

jackknife truck accident lawyer

How the Ohio and Northern Kentucky Injury Lawyers at TLF Can Help

At TLF, our experienced personal injury attorneys are dedicated to helping victims of jackknife accidents in Covington, KY, Cincinnati, OH, and all the nearby areas. When you choose us to represent you, we’ll investigate the circumstances of your accident to determine who should be held liable for your damages.

From there, we’ll help you file a legal claim against the party or parties responsible for the jackknife accident. Our attorneys will also help negotiate with insurance companies to reach a favorable settlement agreement. If we can’t reach an agreement that covers the extent of your losses, we can represent you in court to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

At TLF, our Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati commercial vehicle accident lawyers understand the hardships that personal injury victims may face following an accident and want to ensure you and your family are able to seek justice for your suffering. A jackknife truck accident attorney on our team can help you receive the best possible outcome in your case, allowing you to move on with your life following the accident.

truck jackknife

Injured in a Jackknife Accident? Contact the Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys at TLF for a Free Consultation Today

If you or a loved one has suffered from a serious injury as a result of a jackknife truck accident, contact the commercial truck accident attorneys at TLF: The Medical Injury Law Firm today. Our team understands the devastating impact that these accidents can have on victims and their families, and we’re here to help you through every step of the legal process.

With decades of combined experience, our attorneys have successfully represented numerous victims of trucking accidents in Covington, KY, Cincinnati, OH, and the surrounding areas. We provide personalized attention to each client we take on, allowing us to tailor our legal strategies to their unique circumstances.

Let us help you get the justice you deserve – contact us via our website or call us toll-free at (800) 698-4054 to schedule a free consultation with one of our jackknife accident attorneys today. You may also call our Northern Kentucky office at (859) 898-2472 or our Ohio office at (513) 643-1689 to get in touch.

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You Pay No Fees Unless We Win!

We are happy to offer a free consultation to evaluate your case. If you hire us as your legal counsel, we will represent you on a contingency-fee basis. You will pay no attorneys’ fees unless we recover financial damages.