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The Dangers of Overloaded Commercial Trucks

Published on Jun 7, 2018 at 4:33 pm in Truck Accidents.

Highways are often full of trucks delivering cargo to various parts of the country. The cargo is supposed to be secured so the trucker can drive safely. Sometimes, trucks may be overloaded either due to companies wanting to deliver more of something or there was an oversight. This negligence can cause devastating injuries and puts lives at risk.

If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, you may be suffering from injuries and the stress of missing work. But you don’t have to go through this alone. An Atlanta commercial truck accident lawyer from Bey & Associates will help you with your claim. Our experience and compassion drive us to go above and beyond for our clients and do everything to get you a favorable settlement.

What Regulations Do Trucks Have to Follow?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has strict regulations when it comes to loading cargo on trucks. There are a few steps that truck companies need to take before sending their drivers onto the road.

  • Cargo Distribution. The truck’s cargo has to be even distributed throughout the trailer so no area of the truck is too heavy.
  • Cargo Is Secured. The cargo needs to stay in place during the drive because the moving cargo could cause the truck to fall over on a turn. Even if it doesn’t, the noise of the cargo hitting the sides of the truck would be a distraction to the driver.
  • Cargo Is Within the Allowable Weight. Each truck has a maximum weight that it’s built to haul safely. The cargo should not exceed this amount.

These regulations are put in place for safety. When a truck company decides to ignore regulations, they’re also deciding to risk the truck driver’s life and the lives of anyone they encounter on the road.

What Risks Do Overloaded Trucks Cause?

An overloaded tractor trailer is a serious threat on the road. The increase weight reduces the driver’s amount to handle the truck and weakens its structural integrity.

The following issues may happen when a truck is loaded beyond its carrying capacity or not distributed correctly:

  • Stresses Tires and Brakes. Too much weight will wear down the tires and brakes. In emergency situations, truck drivers may not be able to steer away or stop as quickly as they normally would.
  • Less Control in Inclement Weather. Driving in poor weather like blizzards or icy conditions is dangerous by itself. A truck that’s too heavy could easily spin out and cause a collision.
  • Rollovers. Overloading a truck increases the risk of a truck rollover. This could cause a collision and major injuries.
  • Jackknifing. An 18 wheeler can have a situation where the trailer swings from behind the truck and moves forward to create a jackknife position. Jackknifing can lead to rollovers and drivers have little control over the vehicle.

If an overloaded truck caused an accident where you were injured, you shouldn’t have to be responsible for the aftermath. Your truck accident lawyer will determine the cause of the accident and show that you deserve compensation for your injuries.