Truck accidents do not always happen as a result of driver error. The way in which items are loaded onto flatbed trucks or semi-trailers could also cause an accident. Uneven loads can spell disaster for other drivers on the road.
The dangers of a poorly loaded truck
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration provides truckers with guidance on how to secure their loads. Failure to follow this guidance can put drivers at serious risk. An uneven load carries many potential hazards, including:
- Cargo spills: Uneven loads cause balance issues. An unbalanced truck is at an increased risk of tipping over and spilling its contents all over the highway. You don’t want a heavy object hurtling at your windshield when you’re traveling at a high rate of speed. Liquid spills can leave roadways dangerously slick. The spilling of hazardous chemicals can pose a serious risk to both drivers and nearby residents.
- Jackknifed trucks: A poorly balanced load increases the possibility of a truck jackknifing. Numerous tragedies have occurred as the result of a semi-trailer falling onto the top of vehicles in another lane of traffic.
As you can see, the dangers of uneven loads are apparent.
As with any accident case, it’s important to find who’s responsible. In some cases, the truck driver may have personally loaded the truck and is responsible for the accident. In other situations, another party may have put the load together and could share in the liability. A driver may have felt forced by their employer to take a load they knew was dangerous. Regardless of the cause, you should discuss your case with a legal professional. Together, you can determine who should be held accountable for your damages.