Proper vehicle maintenance may be one of the most important things you can do to stay safe on the road. Like all machines, automobiles require regular maintenance. Failure to provide it can lead to breakdowns and accidents.
How Can Maintenance Issues Put You At Risk on the Road?
Hazards associated with poor maintenance can make a vehicle dangerous to drive.
- Faulty brakes: For a car to be safely operational, it must have brakes that will stop the vehicle within a distance of 25 feet at a speed of 20 mph. Brake pads wear out over time and must be changed on a regular basis to remain safe. If the car swerves to the left or the right when you brake, the brake pads may be worn more on one side than the other.
- Worn tires: Your entire vehicle is riding on the tires. They must be properly inflated to perform their function well and to minimize the risk of a blowout. Bald, worn, or improperly inflated tires can reduce your directional control of the vehicle.
- Steering system failure: Steering is crucial for controlling the car. Steering systems can break down due to lack of maintenance. Common causes are fluid leaks, blocked hoses, worn power steering belts, and contamination of power steering fluid.
- Windshield wiper problems: You need your windshield wipers to clear rain, sleet, snow, dirt, and debris off the windshield. Worn or frayed wiper blades cannot do the job properly, which affects visibility and increases your risk of a crash.
- Burned out lights: Your lights must be working properly so you can see the road ahead and other drivers can see you. Burned out headlights, taillights, brake lights, or turn signal lights can make an auto accident more likely to happen.
- Faulty electrical system: A car’s electrical systems provide power to important safety monitoring devices and systems necessary to keep the vehicle running. Hazards associated with faulty electrical wiring can put drivers and passengers at risk.
- Improper mirror adjustment: Car mirrors must be adjusted to allow for maximum visibility in different directions. When mirrors are not adjusted properly, you could hit someone or something you failed to see.
- Weak or dead battery: A non-working battery can leave you stranded. If your car stalls in the middle of an intersection and refuses to start because the battery is weak or dead, it puts you and other motorists in a dangerous position.
- Broken belts and hoses: A broken belt or hose can send you off to the side of the road. Hoses control the flow of fluid that keeps your engine cool and your brake, transmission, and steering systems working smoothly. A serpentine belt that breaks while you are driving can cause several car systems to fail.
- Poor general maintenance: Past due oil changes, rust, and corrosion can make your car run less efficiently and increase the risk of a breakdown on the road.
What Can You Do to Help Keep Your Car Running Safe?
To help keep your car running in top condition, make sure it has regular maintenance. Inspect and maintain the tires, check the fluids, test the lights, change the oil and filters, and replace the windshield wipers. Take your vehicle to a mechanic for regular checkups that include the brakes, hoses, and belts.
Why Should You Contact a Vehicle Accident Attorney If You Have Been Injured in a Crash?
If you have been hurt in a crash caused by someone else’s negligence, it is important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. Our Charleston personal injury attorneys at Allen Law can thoroughly investigate your accident and look for any poor maintenance issues with the other vehicle that may have contributed to the collision.
Call us at (843) 882-5005 to schedule a free consultation. We can tell you if you have a case and what damages you may be entitled to claim.