Preventing Truck Cargo-Related Car Accidents in Davie and Other Communities
We rely on trucks to carry a range of cargo – from fuels to consumer goods to life-saving fire-extinguishing chemicals and water. In some cases, however, cargo that has been incorrectly secured can lead to serious truck accidents in Davie and other Florida communities. Cargo that rolls off trucks can also cause secondary car accidents in Davie and other cities. To prevent these types of traffic accidents in Davie and across the nation, there are federal rules, FMCSRs, which regulate cargo, among other things, for truck drivers and commercial motor carriers. Under these rules, truck drivers and motor carriers must:
1) Ensure that the cargo is correctly secured and distributed. How the cargo will be distributed and secured will depend on the type of cargo. Securing the cargo ensures that the cargo does not slip and cause a secondary car accident. Distributing the cargo evenly ensures that the cargo is not lopsided, which can increase the risk of a truck rollover.
2) Ensure that all the elements of the truck that are related to the cargo are secured. On an 18 wheeler truck, this will include tarpaulins, tailboard, tailgate, spare tire, and any other equipment used in securing the cargo and operating the truck. In some cases, elements of the truck may become loose or fall off the truck, which can lead to an accident. For example, if the tarp covering the cargo is not correctly secured, it can fly off and cause a secondary car accident.
3) Ensure that the cargo does not obscure visibility or prevent the safe operation of the truck. Under FMCSR rules, nothing must obscure the driver’s front view or side view, although an exception is made for drivers of self-steer dollies. In addition, cargo and other objects must not prevent the truck driver from accessing emergency equipment or from freely moving his or her legs. Cargo and other objects must also not prevent any passenger from safely leaving the cab.
There are also many additional rules for hazardous cargo. For example, many types of hazardous cargo must be clearly labeled. In addition, additional precautions may need to be taken in cases were cargo is highly flammable, unstable, or otherwise dangerous.
Unfortunately, although there many federal rules regarding cargo, not all truck drivers and motor carriers are careful about following the rules. If you are injured in a truck accident in Davie or in any Florida community and you think that the accident was caused by a cargo problem, you may have a legal claim. If the federal rules regarding cargo are not carefully followed, then you may be able to seek a legal claim to get compensation for medical costs, lost income, and other costs related to your injuries.