Unsecured Loads Accidents in Texas
Improperly loaded trucks can result in serious accidents. Houston truck injury attorneys Neal Davis and Jed Silverman are ready to take on your unsecured cargo accident case and help you receive compensation.
Truck accidents can be caused by anything from dangerous weather to improper driver training; however, many truck accidents are actually caused by improperly secured cargo in the truck’s trailer.
Failing to secure the truck’s payload can easily cause the truck to lose control, overturn, or cause the cargo to fall out onto the road. Each of these instances can lead to serious accidents for oncoming drivers.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to unsecured cargo loads, or any other type of trucking accident, don’t leave your compensation up to chance. Houston truck accident attorneys Neal Davis and Jed Silverman are prepared to take on your case.
Know your legal rights.
Contact us today to discuss your options and filing your case.
Truck Accidents Caused by Unsecured Loads
Thousands of accidents across the United States are caused by unsecured cargo every year. Too much weight or cargo that is loose in the trailer can become a hazard in a matter of seconds. Some common types of accidents caused by trucks with unsecured loads include:
- Jackknife accidents - Heavy loads can make it more difficult for truck drivers to brake efficiently, and this can cause a jackknife accident. In a jackknife truck accident, the trailer swings around to face the opposite direction of the cab, and serious accidents are likely.
- Truck rollover - Loose cargo can shift during a sharp turn causing the truck to overturn. This poses a huge threat to oncoming drivers.
- Cargo spilling onto the highway - Cargo flying off of a trailer can become hazardous debris for other drivers, especially on interstate highways where there is less reaction time. Swerving to avoid this debris can also cause a serious accident involving multiple vehicles.
- Hazardous cargo spills - Truck drivers that carry hazardous materials must go through special licensing in order to show they are capable of carrying such cargo. However, accidents do happen, and improperly loading hazardous cargo can cause a spill. Spills can injure other drivers or even be toxic for local residents.
Federal Regulations for Cargo Loads
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration sets numerous rules and regulations for the proper security of a truck’s cargo. Their general rule states the following:
"Cargo must be firmly immobilized or secured on or within a vehicle by structures of adequate strength, dunnage (loose materials used to protect cargo) or dunnage bags (inflatable bags intended to fill the space between articles of cargo or between cargo and the wall of the vehicle), shoring bars, tiedowns, or a combination of these."
This means that trucks are not to be loaded beyond the available means of securing that load. Proper tiedowns must be put into place. Additionally, any cargo that could easily roll or move around inside the trailer must be secured in a way that prevents movement.
Cargo for a tractor trailer in Texas cannot exceed 80,000 lbs. The same is true for all other states in the country. Weigh stations and scales are placed periodically along highways to ensure that all passing trucks are abiding by these federal regulations.
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Liability and Compensation for Unsecured Cargo Accidents
As with any other trucking accident, victims have the right to sue for compensation if negligence is the cause of their accident.
When it comes to trucking accidents, a number of parties or individuals can be involved depending on the accident. If any of these parties failed to keep their responsibilities or acted in negligence, they may owe the victim/s compensation.
Examples of negligent parties that could be held liable include:
- Truck drivers - Truck drivers could be held liable if they fail to make sure their truck’s load is within federal regulatory guidelines.
- Trucking companies - Trucking companies can exercise negligence if they fail to properly train drivers in securing cargo loads.
- Truck manufacturers - Sometimes manufacturing defects can cause cargo to shift dangerously or fall off of a trailer. If this happens, manufacturers can be deemed negligent.
Once you and your attorney have established the negligent party or parties in your case, you can pursue compensation. Accidents with large trucks often cause serious damage that can leave victims facing extensive recovery periods.
Compensation for unsecured load accidents can be awarded for:
- Current and future medical bills
- Vehicle damage
- Lost time at work
- Pain and suffering
In the event of a fatality, wrongful death compensation may be awarded to the victim’s family. Negligent truckers or trucking companies can be made to help pay for funeral expenses, loss of companionship and loss of income.
How an Accident Attorney Can Help
Truck accidents can become complicated easily, especially if damages are high or multiple parties are determined to be responsible for the accident.
An expert personal injury attorney can help you gather the evidence your case needs, add up your total damages, and fight for your right to compensation.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to an unsecured load accident or any accident with a large commercial truck, we’re here to help. Truck accident attorneys Neal Davis and Jed Silverman serve the city of Houston and all surrounding areas, and we’re prepared to do all we can to help you win the compensation you deserve. If we don’t win, you don’t pay. That’s our No Fee Guarantee. Contact us today for a free consultation and get on the road to recovery.