Former Insurance Defense Attorney Turned Personal Injury Attorney

Did overloaded cargo cause the big rig to swerve into you?

If an 18-wheeler sideswiped you or forced you off the road, you are probably focused on recovering from your injuries. Once you can think more clearly, you will begin to piece together what you remember of the accident.

The collision likely happened in the blink of an eye, with no indication of trouble until the big rig next to you suddenly swerved out of its lane and into yours. Why did that happen?

Ignoring the rules

Trucking companies and the drivers they employ must adhere to many state and federal regulations. Overloading the cargo carried by a big rig is a violation of various regulations, but the owner of the truck may ignore the rules in favor of making a larger profit. It is a risk, because overloaded cargo can shift. The truck may be off balance as a result and the driver may find it difficult to control the vehicle, especially at higher speeds.

Causing tire and brake issues

Heavier loads cause tires to run hotter, so tire wear increases. Other component parts are subject to premature wear and tear because of the overload, compromising vehicle driving integrity. An immediate safety concern is that braking distances will increase. If the truck is traveling down a hill, the driver may misjudge the stopping distance: Additional braking force will be necessary to stop the truck.

Determining cause

A criminal defense attorney will tell you that the truck that swerved into you will have a log book. There should also be a governor to regulate the speed of the truck and a GPS system that can provide details of the trip. Your attorney will examine these items as well as the accident scene, calling in reconstructionists and other professionals, if necessary, to determine the cause of the accident. If overloading was to blame, the trucker, the trucking company and any third party involved with the shipment could all be liable for full and fair financial recovery for your medical expenses, lost wages and much more.

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