Large commercial trucks loaded with various types of cargo are constantly traversing our roads and highways. All cargo carried by tractor-trailers is supposed to be loaded properly and secured so that it cannot shift when a truck goes around a curve or swerves. If a truck doesn’t have its cargo secured and equally distributed, the load can shift and cause a truck to tip over and crash.
Since commercial trucks are large in size, any time there is a truck accident, there are often devastating injuries to people in smaller passenger cars sharing the road with large trucks. In an effort to minimize truck crashes, those in the trucking industry should be prioritizing the proper loading and securement of cargo.
Causes of Cargo-Related Truck Accidents
Unfortunately, there are cargo-related truck accidents that occur regularly due to the following factors:
- Overloaded cargo. When trucks are loaded down with too much cargo, they can go over their weight limit, which can also cause top-heaviness. Too much weight can make it difficult for a truck to come to a complete stop in time and increase a truck’s risk of crashing or jackknifing.
- Improperly loaded cargo. When cargo isn’t loaded correctly, it can lead to weight, balance, and instability problems. Unfortunately, cargo can shift and increase a truck’s chance of crashing and toppling over.
- Improperly secured cargo. When items on trucks aren’t tied down and secured, or if they are loose, they can fall off the truck. Consequently, a cargo load can crash directly into other vehicles or create hazards that can force drivers to make erratic maneuvers to avoid such dangers in the roadway. As a result, catastrophic multi-vehicle accidents can occur.
Penalties For Not Securing Cargo
Because there are dangers associated with the way cargo is loaded, secured, and distributed on a commercial truck, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has established a set of cargo securement rules to govern the proper securing of cargo on commercial trucks. When truck drivers, trucking companies, or shippers fail to follow these rules or are careless about loading and securing their cargo, they need to be held accountable for the devastating injuries innocent motorists suffer in cargo-related crashes.
Contact a Virginia Truck Accident Lawyer Today
If you have suffered because a truck driver or trucking company was negligent in the loading of a truck, you should contact us for a complimentary consultation. Please fill out a short form on our Contact Us page today.