This week we have been discussing how the causes of some truck accidents aren’t as obvious as others – for instance, a significant number of commercial semi crashes that take place each year are caused by a problem with the cargo, such as cargo that shifts during travel or cargo that is not packed correctly.
One of the biggest and most dangerous cargo issues takes place when a truck is overloaded with cargo, making the vehicle heavier than is safe and legal. Why are overloaded or overweight trucks more likely to cause accidents?
• Overweight trucks are harder to slow and stop – if a truck needs to stop quickly for traffic and weighs too much, it may slam into the back of the vehicle in front of it.
• Heavy trucks must slow to dangerous speeds when traveling uphill.
• Heavy trucks gain dangerous amounts of momentum when traveling down steep grades and may be difficult to slow or stop.
• Overweight trucks have a higher chance of suffering a tire blowout, which could cause the truck driver to lose control of the vehicle.
• An overweight truck has a higher probability of tip over and roll over accidents since the heavy cargo raises the vehicle’s center of gravity.
• An overweight truck is more likely to suffer a mechanical problem, such as failing brakes, because of the unsafe amount of cargo.
When a truck accident is caused by an overloaded or overweight truck, a number of parties may be found at fault for the crash, including the loading company, the trucking company, or the truck driver. If you have been involved in a commercial 18-wheeler accident that you believe may have been caused by an overloaded truck, speak to a Virginia truck accident lawyer at Shapiro & Appleton& Duffan today.