There’s nothing scarier than to be riding behind a truck when it suddenly tips over, losing its contents all over the highway. This is known as a lost load truck accident. Trying to navigate the lost cargo can be nearly impossible, even though you’ve done everything right when sharing the road with this 80,000-pound machine. Unfortunately, this type of accident happens far too often, with devastating results.
The truck accident attorneys with Sand Law have years of experience helping clients fight for their rights, and helping them obtain full compensation for the injuries they’ve suffered in lost-load accidents. We’re ready to do the same for you. If you would like to schedule a free case review, please don’t hesitate to use our online form, or to give us a call at 651-291-7263.
How Overloaded and Lost Loads Can Cause Truck Accidents
Driving near a commercial truck always has its risks. A trucker shortage means that more and more inexperienced people are driving these behemoths than at any other time in recent memory. Demand for goods is increasing, putting even more pressure on drivers to meet deadlines. They will often drive when they’re incredibly tired in an effort to do so.
But there is also pressure on the people who are responsible for loading trucks. This pressure can sometimes lead to negligent loading, which can result in a disastrous accident. It’s estimated that nearly 30% of truck accidents occur because the driver loses control – in many instances, this occurs because of a sudden shift in the truck’s load.
There are a lot of reasons why lost-load accidents occur, including the following:
- Overloading. Every commercial truck has what is known as a GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating). This simply means there’s a limit to how much cargo a truck can carry in a safe manner. When overloading takes place, that increases the risk of a lost-load accident.
- Improperly securing the cargo. Loaders will sometimes fail to secure the cargo in the proper fashion, causing a shift during transit that can lead to the load being lost.
- Imbalanced loads. If there is too much cargo on one side of a truck, that can make it much more likely to be involved in a jackknife accident.
What is an Unsecured Load?
An unsecured load can easily come loose and spill all over a highway, causing chaos among any motorists that are behind the truck. But just because cargo is unsecured, that doesn’t necessarily mean a spill will occur. What is likely to occur, however, is that the driver of the truck will not be able to maintain control.
How to Reduce the Risk of Overload or Lost Load Accidents
Most motorists are conscientious enough to take the steps necessary to be as safe as possible whenever they’re near a truck on a highway. Trucking companies have the same responsibilities to be safe as well, especially when it comes to minimizing the chances of a lost-load accident.
The first thing they should do is to make sure all loading is performed in strict accordance with governmental regulations. They should also weigh their trucks before allowing them to leave to make sure no overloading has taken place. Finally, they should inspect the cargo thoroughly to ensure it has been properly secured.
Unfortunately, companies will often ignore these safety precautions, causing devastating accidents in the process.
Injuries Associated with Lost Load Truck Accidents
Any accident involving a huge semi-truck can lead to a lifetime of suffering. Here are just a few of the different types of injuries this kind of accident can cause.
- Burns (from not only fires, but also the deployment of an airbag)
- Neck and spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
However, truck accidents can lead to not only physical injuries, but severe mental trauma as well. Victims will often have to ensure emotional distress that they might have to deal with for the rest of their lives. They may be eligible to receive compensation for their emotional trauma as well.
Who’s at Fault for a Lost Load Truck Accident?
A trucking accident can be extremely complex. One of the main reasons is that there will often be multiple parties that are liable. The trucking company, for example, could be liable because of the negligence of the employees who loaded the truck. They might have overloaded it, or failed to properly secure the cargo. The company may have even ordered the overloading in an effort to maximize their profits.
The blame could also fall on the driver of another car who may have caused the truck to swerve, and then ultimately tip over because the cargo came loose. If that’s the case, then that motorist’s insurance company could also face liability.
Speak to an Experienced Truck Accident Attorney Today
These types of complexities are exactly why you’ll need the help of an attorney who knows how to determine all the liable parties in a lost-load trucking accident. A skilled legal representative will be able to uncover the evidence needed in order to build the strongest possible case on your behalf.
You need a law firm with the resources it takes to conduct a thorough investigation as quickly as possible after the accident takes place. The accident scene can undergo rapid changes, due to factors such as road construction, or changing weather conditions. If you don’t act quickly, crucial evidence could be lost forever. An attorney can also find other evidence, such as footage from nearby cameras that might have captured exactly how the accident took place.
Attorneys can also negotiate on your behalf with insurance companies in order to procure a fair settlement. But if insurers refuse to make that offer, attorneys will be ready to take the case to trial. If necessary, they can call in expert witnesses to make your case even stronger.
Let the lost-load truck accident attorneys with Sand Law tell you more about how we may be able to help. You can contact us online to schedule a free consultation, or you can contact us at 651-291-7263.