Unsecured Cargo Accidents Can Lead to Severe Consequences

If you’ve been injured, our truck accident attorneys are ready to fight for you

Many truck accidents are the result of items falling off due to improper maintenance and unsecured loads. When these accidents happen, they can cause significant damage to victims and their families, including injuries that are fatal. People’s lives can be impacted physically, emotionally, and financially.

Truck driver securing cargo

These accidents are often the result of driver or trucking company negligence. If you or your loved one was injured in a trucking collision involving unsecured cargo, you may be able to recover financial compensation. The experienced truck accident attorneys at Fried Goldberg LLC can help.

Our team of attorneys dedicate most of our caseload to truck accident cases. We can help you navigate the trucking industry’s insurance and legal minefields to hold negligent parties accountable. Our goal is to recover maximum compensation for you and your loved ones.

Why do accidents involving unsecured cargo happen?

Truck drivers, trucking companies, and other parties have a legal responsibility to properly secure cargo loads on trucks. But sometimes this responsibility is not met, and these parties fail to check that cargo is adequately secured.

Unsecured cargo accidents are part of a bigger category of trucking accidents that involve trucking-related debris on the road. You’ve most likely seen boxes, mattresses, lumber and/or other large items littering the side of the road. Chances are good that this roadside litter is fallen truck cargo that was improperly secured during loading.

Some common types of fallen truck cargo include:

  • Raw materials (lumber, sheet metal)
  • Household goods (furniture, mattresses)
  • Car parts (tires, drive shafts)

Identifying the type of cargo that caused your car wreck and injury may be an important component to filing a claim.

Unsecured truck cargo accidents can be easily prevented by standard safety measures. But because of the unrealistic deadlines that many shipping companies impose on their drivers, some truckers work too hastily when securing their cargo. A driver’s rush to get their cargo loaded and on the road can result in a life-or-death situation for accident victims.

Types of unsecured cargo accidents

Unsecured cargo does not only mean falling objects. When truck cargo is not properly secured, the entire vehicle becomes a hazard on the road. Unsecured cargo means an imbalanced vehicle that is much more prone to causing an accident. Here are some examples of accidents caused by negligent handling of cargo load and unsecured material:

  • Improperly secured cargo – When this cargo shifts around in the truck trailer, it creates a critical mass for rollovers. A sudden gust of wind may provide all the momentum needed for the cargo to carry the truck over onto its side. If a semi-truck makes a sudden turn or experiences a skid-out, the unsecured load may swing hard against the trailer of the truck, causing it to hinge hard against the cab and even spin the whole vehicle around.
  • Falling cargo – Many unsecured truck cargo accidents are caused simply by the cargo falling out of the trailer and flying into the road at top speed. These large, heavy materials can be deathly if they strike the hood or windshield of an oncoming car.
  • Debris/road hazards – A truck’s cargo may simply fall out of the flatbed or trailer and become an extremely dangerous obstacle. Even if no other motorists are around when it falls, a big object lying in the middle of the lane poses a serious hazard on the highway when other drivers come upon it unaware.
  • Other accidents – Falling items may cause accidents simply because of the alarm they create. Unexpected flying cargo can force cars to swerve suddenly and risk hitting other motorists, or can frighten drivers, causing them to slam on their brakes.

Causes of unsecured cargo accidents

An unsecured load may be the result of poor balancing of cargo while loading or improper tie-downs. But other factors can contribute to an unsecured truck load, such as:

  • Shifting of the load during travel
  • Wear and tear on the ropes, chains, or straps

This is why the trucker is responsible for checking the cargo’s security at regular intervals. Failing to perform this crucial step may constitute negligence on the part of the truck driver whose unsecured load caused the accident.

The types of accidents and causes that result from unsecured cargo is typically caused by negligence, which forms the basis of liability in a potential lawsuit suing for compensation. Your lawyer will seek to prove that the defendant in your case failed to exercise reasonable care in their duty to secure the truck’s cargo.

The truck driver and the trucking company may be held liable for violation of load securement rules depending on their role in the accident. The trucking company may handle the actual loading of the truck and fail to properly secure the cargo, and the truck driver may neglect his or her duty to regularly inspect it to make certain the securing devices are adequately fastened.

Contact an experienced truck accident lawyer

Unsecured truck cargo accidents can do unthinkable damage. Between the personal injury that may result and the massive property damage that is practically a given in these situations, an unsecured load on a truck can mean serious physical and financial damage for you and your family.

Accidents like these are the reason why Fried Goldberg dedicates the majority of our practice to trucking law. We’ve helped hundreds of people who have been involved in truck accidents. Our lawyers take nothing for granted when it comes to proving negligence and seeking the maximum amount of compensation.

If you or a loved one are picking up the pieces after an accident involving unsecured truck cargo, we can help. Contact us to schedule a consultation with one of our lawyers. It is completely free, with no obligation. We are here to help you understand your rights.

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