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Motor Carrier Regulations: Inspections

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is tasked with providing oversight to the tractor trailers and the trucking industry as a whole. One of the areas that is heavily regulated is the inspection, repairs, and maintenance of tractor trailers.

Regulations require that all large trucks and commercial shipping vehicles be meticulously inspected to prevent any sort of potentially dangerous mechanical failure. Before driving a tractor trailer, the driver must sign an inspection report saying that the vehicle is in safe operating condition. A full inspection is required every year and documentation of each inspection and any repairs must be kept by the carrier company for at least a year.

One of the most common types of tractor trailer accidents on Missouri’s roadways is the jackknife accident. This occurs when the cabin of the tractor trailer is violently shifted to the side of the cargo trailer. A mechanical failure in the braking system is often the cause of these accidents. Jackknife tractor trailer accidents have the potential to injure not only the truck driver, but any Missouri driver is at risk for personal injury if they are following a truck that jackknifes.

Missouri truck drivers are also required to do spot inspections of emergency systems, lighting, and doors every 90 days.

If you or someone you know is injured in a tractor trailer accident, the most important thing to do is to talk to an experienced Missouri tractor trailer attorney as soon as possible. If a mechanical failure due to lax inspection standards is to blame, these inspection records will be invaluable evidence, but motor carrier companies will destroy these files after a year. This is especially true if the carrier was negligent and did not follow the Federal inspection standards.