Large commercial trucks carry everything from building materials to consumer goods. When truck cargo falls out of the truck or trailer and onto the road, the consequences can be disastrous. If you or a loved one were involved in a truck accident involving dropped truck cargo, we can help you hold the liable parties accountable and recover monetary damages. Identifying all parties who are responsible for the incident is one of the keys to successfully recovering full damages.
FMCSA Truck Cargo Securement Regulations
Truck cargo should never fall from a truck or trailer. The freight may strike another vehicle directly or become a potentially deadly obstacle in the road. Vehicles that swerve to avoid the freight can cause collisions with other vehicles, pedestrians, or cyclists. Even more stunning, we have handled multiple cases where leaf springs and other metal objects are lying on the roadway, only to become a projectile when an 18-wheeler runs over it. This projectile can then shatter the front windshield and strike the driver or occupant of another vehicle. Additionally, hazardous and flammable materials that leak out or fall from trucks or trailers can cause fires or clouds of toxic fumes. Because of the dangers loose truck/trailer cargo pose, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has instituted strict rules regarding the loading and securement of truck/trailer cargo. Cargo must be securely immobilized with materials strong enough to hold the materials in place during transit. Many accidents involving loose truck/trailer cargo are caused by FMCSA cargo securement violations.
Determining Liability for an Accident Caused by Loose Truck Cargo
The party who is liable or legally responsible for a crash caused by loose cargo is not always clear. Often, liability is shared between multiple parties. The party that loaded and secured the cargo may have loaded the cargo incorrectly or failed to use adequate tiedowns and other securement devices. The truck driver or the trucking company may have neglected crucial inspections that would have revealed securement issues. The cargo securement devices or truck parts may have been defective in their design or manufacture.
Identifying which parties are responsible for the loose cargo is one of the most crucial steps in putting the victim in position to maximize compensation for a truck/trailer cargo-related accident. A qualified personal injury lawyer who is intimately familiar with truck accident claims can investigate the collision and locate the culpable parties. Often times, there are insurance policies available for the driver, the company truck as well as the trailer. Many times, there are multiple policies which cover the company and driver. A skilled attorney will locate evidence including traffic camera footage, truck loading, inspection, maintenance records, event data recorder (EDR) information, and forensic evidence like debris and skid marks to investigate all causes of this type of accident. Once the liable parties have been identified and evidence demonstrating the parties’ negligence has been uncovered, the law firm has a firm foundation for a successful personal injury case.
Contact a McKinney Truck Accident Lawyer
If you or a loved one were hurt in a collision caused by improperly secured truck/trailer cargo, you may be able to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, physical impairment, disfigurement and other damages. A Collin County truck accident attorney from Burress Personal Injury Law can investigate your accident, gather evidence, and build a compelling case for damages. Call us at 214-726-0016 for a free consultation.
FMCSA: Cargo Securement Rules