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Federal guidelines govern commercial brake usage

The federal government maintains a set of regulations to help ensure that car drivers and passengers in West Virginia and the rest of the nation are traveling alongside compliant and safe commercial truck drivers. The section of the regulatory code that pertains to correct construction, installation and upkeep of parts and accessories clearly outlines the government's expectations of truck drivers as well as their employers.

All brakes must perform in an adequate capacity to safely and consistently stop an individual or combined vehicle and hold the vehicle in place. Service brakes must be equipped to all wheels on a vehicle. They must be capable of functioning at any time through a single application valve, and warning signals must be installed in case of failure. Specific guidelines of weight and braking force must be met as well in order to ensure that vehicles are able to stop when necessary.

Parking brakes must be capable of holding a vehicle in place in normal conditions. Emergency brakes must be ready for a driver to access from a seated position with a belt worn, and they must also be able to stop a vehicle from a specific distance at 20 miles per hour. Also, if a vehicle's brake system is interconnected, its design must allow for continued independent function in the event that another connected system fails.

Commercial truck accidents can often result in injured victims pursuing compensation for their losses. A personal injury attorney can review accident investigation reports and other evidence to determine whether the cause of the accident was truck driver fatigue or negligent truck maintenance.

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