Truck Load Shifting Injuries Lawyer
Trucks are usually comprised of two parts: a tractor and a trailer. Trailers are used to transport large quantities of materials to various destinations throughout the country. However, there are often problems with how a trailer is loaded or the cargo that it contains as the driver attempts to navigate city, state, and local highways and roadways.
Unfortunately, unsecured and overloaded trailers can cause accidents and injuries. The attorneys of Reiff Law Firm’s The Truck Accident Team have worked tirelessly to help those who have been injured in a truck accident receive compensation for their injuries. With decades of experience representing injured clients all across the country, we employ a team of creative thinkers who know exactly how to work with the trucking industry.
Different Types of Load Shifting Injuries
It is usually impossible to tell what a truck is carrying in its trailer unless the trailer is open on the sides. With all the different types of cargo that could possibly be on the road, there are countless injuries that can result from a trucks load shifting when on the road.
The greatest potential for a load shifting accident and subsequent injury happens during a turn. When you are driving it is inevitable that you will have to make a turn, and as you are aware you have to slow down in order to effectively and safely make a turn. However, turns present a problem for many trucks as not only does it require that the driver slows down to a sufficient speed, but it also means that the driver will have to be careful not to make overcorrections so as to avoid the load in their vehicle shifting. If a driver navigates a corner too sharply it can tip the trailer and subsequently the tractor potentially injuring both the driver and other motorists on the road.
Bulkhead and header board accidents
The driver of a tractor-trailer also has to be cognizant of avoiding sudden stops. If a driver hits their brakes too hard it can cause the materials in the trailer to suddenly shift. In these types of situations, the cargo can actually go through the trailer and crush the driver in the cab.
Often these accidents are the result of the cargo or load being improperly loaded, or the restraint system used to secure the cargo was not properly executed or it fails.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has mandated certain regulations as they pertain to how cargo is loaded and transported in tractor-trailers. Truck drivers and shipping companies are required to load their vehicles safely and must take into account several factors when they are loading the trailers including:
Weight of the cargo
When a driver is loading materials in their truck, they must account not only for the overall weight of the materials that they are loading in their vehicle but also for the overall distribution of the weight in the vehicle. If the load is too heavy for the trailer, then this can lead to accidents. In addition, if the load and cargo are not loaded in an even manner it can cause the cargo to shift during transportation.
Lashing and securing cargo
Under the rules set forth by the FMSCA all devices and systems that a driver uses to secure the cargo in their trailer must meet specific performance criteria.
When cargo is loaded into the back of a trailer it needs to be restrained with a system of tie downs which are used to restrain the articles in the trailer from moving freely in the back of the cab. Federal regulations establish that there must be at least one tiedown for articles that are less than 5 feet in length in those that weigh 1,100 lbs or less. The heavier and longer an object and piece of cargo is, the more tie downs a driver will be responsible for using.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration implemented these rules in an attempt not only to protect drivers who may be injured by cargo that falls out of a truck but also by cargo that may roll forward and injure the truck driver.
Contact Our Truck Wreck lawyers Today
To schedule a private, no-cost evaluation, call the truck accident lawyers of The Truck Accident Team at (215) 709-6940 or contact us online. If the statute of limitations expires, your window of legal opportunity will close and you won’t be able to pursue a claim. So contact us today to see how we can make our experience work for you. You only pay if there’s a financial recovery.