Goods transportation is a crucial aspect of the economy of any state or country. One of the most commonly used methods of transporting goods is by truck. Cargo loading on a vehicle is, therefore, an essential aspect to take care of to avoid any unfavorable circumstances. When items are loaded onto a truck in a manner that assures their safety and security throughout transit, the procedure is referred to as “cargo loading.”
Houston is tagged as the deadliest city in the USA, with commercial trucks encountering fatal accidents. As per statistics, over 2,835 accidents have taken place. Be it a tractor-trailer, a huge FedEx vehicle, a UPS vehicle, or an 18-wheeler, it becomes a major reason for a truck accident when goods loading is improper. If you have also been a part of any truck collision due to improper cargo loading, top truck accident lawyers in Houston can help you with such battles to get you productive and positive results.
Reasons Why Improper Truck Loading Can Lead to Truck Accidents
An improperly loaded vehicle can come crashing down, losing its balance, thereby tipping it. It can crash the vehicle and its contents, colliding with other vehicles following it and around it. The load’s size, weight, and form can considerably impact the stability and maneuverability of the vehicle. Below are some common reasons how improper cargo loading can result in truck accidents:
- Overloading Goods
Overloading is one of the most frequent reasons for truck accidents. A truck’s tires, brakes, and suspension system are severely strained when overloaded. Additionally, an overloaded vehicle is harder to control, which raises the possibility of a crash or other mishap. In addition to being harder to stop, overladen trucks risk hitting other cars or roadside obstructions.
- Uneven Distribution
Failure to evenly distribute the load is another cause of incorrect cargo loading. The vehicle may become unstable due to unevenly distributed goods, which will make it challenging to steer. The vehicle may lean to one edge or the other whenever the weight of the load isn’t spread evenly, which could result in a rollover or a loss of control. However, it is always best to prevent such accidents by taking prior precautions and using caution while loading goods into a transportation vehicle.
- Poorly Secured Goods
Another big risk factor for crashes involving trucks is poorly secured goods. When goods are not properly secured, they may move during shipment or even tumble off the vehicle. The automobile may become unstable due to a loosely secured load, resulting in a crash or loss of control. Falling goods can increase the danger of an accident by posing a hazard for other road users.
- Impact of Weather
The weather can significantly influence the probability of accidents caused by poor cargo loading. For instance, a truck with irregularly-distributed goods or one that is overloaded may become more challenging to control in slippery or icy weather. Cargo weight can make tires lose traction and increase the likelihood of a skid or rollover.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set comprehensive and mandatory rules and regulations to secure goods. The FMCSA advises truck drivers to examine the cargo every 50 miles of travel to be sure nothing has fallen loose.
Drivers must examine the goods every 150 miles (whenever possible). It is particularly crucial if an automobile driver is moving liquids. Liquids naturally move and shift while being transported inside their containers. Traveling with liquids will ultimately cause the connections holding the load down to loosen, regardless of how securely the driver secures the load to the vehicle.
Steel straps, webbing, and other fasteners must be used to secure truck loads, among other things. Inflatable bags should be used by drivers to fill up any gaps between the goods and prevent them from shifting around inside the vehicle. The FMCSA has guidelines governing how cargo must be transported, regardless of the type of goods on the truck.
Any truck accident associated with improper cargo loading results in an incompatible fight with insurers and transportation companies. Cargo loading is complex, and improper loading can result in dangerous situations and truck accidents. It can put the driver’s life at risk and even those of others who are commuting by road. Proper loading of cargo is essential, efficient, and safe for goods transportation.