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California may expand lemon law to include commercial trucks

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Why properly maintained trucks are essential for safe roads

California's lemon law provides legal protections to people who experience chronic maintenance problems after buying new vehicles. While the law is primarily meant to protect consumers from being financially devastated by a bad vehicle purchase, good vehicle maintenance is also important to keep the roads safe for everyone.

Earlier this month, the California Senate introduced SB 713, a bill that would entitle the buyers of commercial trucks to some of the same lemon law protections afforded to auto buyers. Read on to learn what this could mean for motorists. 

Commercial truck defects: expensive and dangerous

If the bill passes, purchasers of trucks heavier than 10,000 pounds that are operated by a business would be covered by the state's lemon law for up to 18 months from the date of delivery.

This bill is intended to protect people who buy large trucks from financial losses, but it could also have implications for road safety. If it's easier for truck drivers to replace defective tractor trailers, we can hope it leads to fewer "lemons" on the road.

There are many ways that a truck malfunction can lead to a potentially devastating accident:

  • Equipment failure can leave a truck in the middle of the road with very little control in the hands of the driver. Sudden stops, changes in speed and lane changes are all highly risky in large vehicles.
  • The substantial weight and speed of large trucks can put a tremendous strain on weakened equipment, leaving trucks more vulnerable to brake, tire or steering failure.
  • Delays caused by excessive maintenance can place additional deadline pressure on a driver, making them more likely to speed or drive without adequate rest.
  • For trucks carrying hazardous materials, containment problems can cause serious injury to everyone on the surrounding road.

Holding negligent manufacturers accountable

At Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP, we are leaders in accident litigation involving defective vehicles and auto parts. Our attorneys have secured compensation in the millions and billions of dollars for injured clients while demanding safety and accountability from the auto industry. If you or someone you love have been hurt, seek immediate medical attention and then consider speaking with an attorney.

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