Traffic accidents are common in the U.S., and often these collisions involve commercial trucks. In many situations, the trucker, truck manufacturer, motor carrier, maintenance provider, or loader is at fault for these trucking accidents. Had each of these parties performed their duties properly, the accident would not have happened and you would not be facing a lengthy recovery and thousands of dollars in medical bills. Unfortunately, there are many places where something can go wrong, including with the truck’s cargo. If the truck’s cargo was not properly secured and within maximum weight and size requirements, then you may have been hurt in a truck load accident.
To learn more about your rights and options after this type of semi-truck crash, contact our experienced personal injury lawyers at Studinski Law, LLC. Call us today at (715) 343-2850 for a free case consultation.
Truck Load Regulations
Commercial trucks are regulated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This organization dictates factors like:
- A truck’s maximum weight
- A truck’s maximum width and height
- Requirements for carrying an oversized load
- The commercial driver’s license endorsement required for different types of cargo
- Container requirements for certain types of cargo, like hazardous materials
- Securement rules for cargo
Wisconsin also has its own trucking regulations that may pertain to a truck’s load. If you are in an accident with a commercial truck in Wisconsin, you should work with an experienced trucking lawyer in Wisconsin who can determine whether the trucker and motor carrier were compliant with all relevant state and federal regulations. If the trucker, carrier, or even the company responsible for loading the truck did not follow the pertinent laws, then this may be evidence of negligence.
Factors in Truck Load Accidents
Crashes related to a commercial truck’s cargo load happen for a variety of reasons, including:
All commercial vehicles have a maximum weight limit dictated by the FMCSA and state laws. The truck’s total weight with its cargo depends on the type of truck and the roadways where it will travel. If a truck’s weight with the cargo is above its allowable weight, then there may be a higher risk of an accident.
- Improper containers
Different types of cargo need different types of containers. This is particularly true for liquids, hazardous materials, and perishable items. If a potentially dangerous material is not in the proper container, then a minor incident could become catastrophic.
- Unsecured or improperly secured cargo
Trucks carry all type of loads, including livestock, dry goods, construction and building materials, oil and gas, hazardous materials, and more. The FMCSA requires each of these types of loads to be secured properly. If the cargo is not fully secured to the truck, it may move around or fall off the truck.
- An imbalanced load
The balance of a large semi-truck is important. If a trailer’s weight is greater on one side than the other, it may make the truck far more difficult to safely maneuver. If the cargo is able to move around, sending weight from one side to the other, or back to front, this can control the movement of the trailer.
If you are injured in a truck load accident, contact an experienced truck accident lawyer immediately. It is not enough to know the cargo had something to do with the crash. You need to know where the trucker, motor carrier, or loader went wrong to properly determine liability.
Common Types of Truck Load Accidents
The common truck load issues discussed above can lead to a variety of types of accidents, including:
When a truck is overloaded or is improperly balanced, it is more likely to overturn while turning or on a curve.
- Fallen cargo
Improperly secured or unsecured cargo is likely to fall off the truck. This cargo may directly collide with a vehicle or if it falls to the road, cause vehicles to swerve and collide with other cars, guardrails, walls, and ditches.
- Swinging trailers
When a truck is too heavy, improperly balanced, or has unsecured cargo, the trailer may be difficult to control. The unexpected movement of cargo can cause the trailer to fishtail or jackknife.
- Brake failures
One of the reasons trucks have a maximum allowable weight is because the heavier the truck the greater the stopping distance and the harder its brakes have to work. When a truck is overweight or has improperly secured cargo k, brake function can be compromised and brake failure can become more likely.
Pursuing Compensation After a Truck Load Accident
If you were injured in a crash caused by an improper truck load, call our accident lawyers today. We can investigate the accident to determine what went wrong and who is liable. Once we know the responsible party, we can help you seek compensation for your:
- Medical expenses
- Wage loss
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress and mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of earning capacity
- Loss of society and companionship
- Property damage, when applicable
Many truck accident claims begin and end with an insurance claim. However, that does not mean you should not prepare your case properly to head to court. Filing a personal injury lawsuit is often necessary to gather information and take other steps to obtain fair and reasonable compensation for your injuries.
Contact Our Truck Load Accident Lawyers Today
Were you injured in an accident with a semi-truck? Do you believe the crash was caused by the truck being improperly loaded? If so, call us at Studinski Law, LLC today at (715) 343-2850. We will seek to preserve evidence, work with state and federal authorities, and hire outside experts to determine who is responsible for the crash and liable for compensating you for your injuries. Our legal team offers personalized and aggressive representation to pursue the maximum compensation you deserve under the law.