According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, all cargo on trucks must be “firmly immobilized or secured on or within a variety of structures.” Unfortunately, not all drivers follow the rules and ensure their trucks are safely loaded. Load effects are one of four primary causes of trucks rolling over, and the consequences when a load is unbalanced can be deadly.
Drivers and transportation companies can be held legally responsible if a truck crashes because of a problem with the way that cargo is loaded. Steinger, Greene & Feiner represents victims and family members involved in collisions and we can help you prove cargo-loading problems were the direct cause of your accident. Our experienced attorneys have helped clients recover millions in compensation after truck crashes and we are ready to put our legal knowledge to work for you.
When the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted a Large Truck Causation study, the federal agency determined that cargo shifts were the cause of 2,316 single-vehicle truck collisions as well as 65 multi-vehicle crashes. A total of 11 percent of truck crashes occurred due to cargo shifting in transit.
When the load is not balanced properly, the driver can lose control or the truck may be prone to rolling over. Cargo securement systems must be used by truckers to ensure that freight stays in place and doesn’t cause the truck to become unbalanced. The systems must be able to withstand the forces that occur as a result of:
Oversized and overweight loads are among the most dangerous. Trucks carrying liquids or gases are also susceptible to problems as the liquid sloshes, so tanks should be filled to at least 3/4 of their maximum capacity.
Truck drivers have an obligation to follow all regulations set by the FMCSA, including rules related to safe loading of their cargo. Professional drivers are also expected exercise reasonable care in balancing loads so others are not put at risk.
When a trucker fails in this obligation, he or she can be held responsible for any accident that occurs as a result. A transportation company can also be held responsible for accidents as well based on:
Victims of a truck accident can recover compensation for losses from the trucker or trucking company if the victim can prove either that FMCSA rules or other regulations were violated, or that the trucker or trucking company was careless and failed to fulfill a legal obligation to keep the public safe.
Steinger, Greene & Feiner understands truck accident claims inside and out, and we can help you prove your crash occurred because of an unbalanced load. Call today to schedule a free consultation with an attorney.