Properly maintaining a semi is key to keeping it functional and safe. Non-professional drivers have been trained to get regular fuel changes on their cars and SUVs, but the extent of normal maintenance required for light-duty trucks and sedans is negligible compared to what is necessary for a long haul trucker to insure his rig is safe.
Making sure the oil is topped off is among the most important aspects of preventative maintenance. A large truck engine requires significant lubrication to perform properly, and failing to do so increases the risk of engine failure or other mechanical breakdowns. This is also one of the easiest maintenance tasks to perform, as it takes just a few minutes before beginning each run.
Checking tire pressure is also a simple job for a big rig driver. Insufficient tire pressure can lead to tire blowouts or poor traction on the roads, both of which are linked to significantly increased accident rates. Taking a few moments to eyeball the wear and tear on the tires is also a good idea. A brake check is more time consuming than checking oil and tire pressure, but functioning brakes are absolutely necessary for safe driving. Worn brakes can cause accidents simply by increasing the time and distance it takes to brake by a small amount. The radiator and all other fluids should also be checked before each run.
Failing to take these important maintenance steps makes accidents likely. If you or someone you love has been injured in a truck accident, determining whether or not proper maintenance protocols were followed is important. An experienced attorney knows how to push for that information, and can help evaluate your accident to determine the likelihood that improper maintenance played a role.