Commercial trucks are subject to a number of federal and state regulations that trucking companies do not always observe. One practice that continues despite the potential danger is overloading cargo.
If you are the victim of a truck-car crash due to overloaded cargo, is the truck driver the only negligent party? Or are others also at fault?
Why off-balance loads cause loss of control
Overloaded cargo is likely to shift, which may cause the truck to be off balance. The risk of rollover increases in this situation. However, another major problem is one of control. The driver may not realize how much more pressure it will take to apply the brakes nor how much longer it will take to bring the big rig to a stop. An overloaded truck will also reduce emergency handling capabilities.
When shifting happens
Overloading is among the major causes of truck crashes. Heavily loaded cargo is usually not apparent, and if you are driving near the big rig, you may have no warning if the load suddenly shifts and causes the truck driver to lose control of the vehicle. Since your car or SUV is so much smaller than the truck and not nearly as heavy, it will likely take the brunt of the crash, and you may sustain serious and even life-changing injuries.
Who is liable
Look into your legal options promptly. The authorities, insurance companies and others will begin investigating to determine negligence. Keep in mind that fault does not stop with the truck driver but very likely extends to the company that owns the truck as well as the person or company responsible for loading the truck and/or training new hires in loading practices.
As the victim of a truck-car crash, you have every right to expect full and fair compensation to cover your current and future medical expenses and more.