If you or your loved one was hurt in a roll-over truck accident, there is a good chance that the collision may have been caused by a problem with the truck's cargo. According to the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine, a study of crash causes for large trucks found that 26 out of 239 rollover truck accidents happened due to cargo loading problems.
You and your loved one may also have been in an accident when cargo flew off a truck and hit you or caused an obstacle in the road, or you may have been hurt when a driver lost control of a truck because the tire blew out due to the truck's being overweight.
Whatever the specifics are, you need to know what to do if you suspect that a truck crash which left you injured was caused by a failure to load the truck's cargo safely.
What to Do if You Were a Victim of a Truck Crash Caused by Cargo Problems
The link between cargo problems and truck crash risks has been clearly established, with Trucking Info warning that a significant portion of collisions involving trucks each year happen due to cargo load problems. Rollovers, which are especially common when there are cargo issues, tend to cause extremely serious or even fatal injuries to victims because of the damaging effects of a large and heavy truck falling onto a car.
Since injuries are often serious or fatal, victims and their families need to know how to pursue a claim to get compensation. Some of the things a victim should do following a crash include:
- Report the incident to the police and get a police report. The report may indicate that cargo problems may have been the cause, which would be very helpful in proving a case against the trucker.
- Take pictures. In some cases, it will be clearly visible in the pictures that the truck was overloaded or that the cargo was not balanced. This can help you make a claim.
- Hire a lawyer. Proving that cargo problems caused the truck accident can be complicated. You may need to obtain evidence from the trucking company during the discovery period, such as obtaining information on company policies related to loading vehicles and obtaining vehicle logs showing the truck's weight. You may also require accident reconstruction specialists who can testify that the overloaded truck was the direct cause of the collision that hurt you. An attorney helps you to build a case showing the trucker and trucking company were responsible for causing the accident. Because the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has many regulations related to cargo loading, you could also create a presumption that the trucker was negligent by showing that he violated truck safety rules. This can make proving your claim easier.
If you can prove responsibility for causing the crash, this should be sufficient to entitle you to personal injury compensation for your losses.