According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, large trucks are involved in more than 7,000 accidents, 2,000 injuries, and 70 fatalities throughout the state each year. Semi-truck accidents are particularly dangerous because of the size and weight of the vehicles, and in most cases, the occupants of other vehicles bear the brunt of the impact. These accidents happen for a variety of reasons, but one that can be challenging for an injured person to deal with is loose or unsecured cargo. If you have been injured in a truck accident, an attorney can help you determine who was responsible and seek compensation.
How Unsecured Cargo Can Cause an Accident
In order for a truck driver to safely operate their vehicle, the weight of the cargo must be properly distributed across all axles. If the cargo has been improperly loaded, or if it shifts in transit because it was not fully secured, the driver may lose traction or control and collide with other vehicles. In some cases, the movement of heavy cargo can even cause the truck to topple and cause a rollover accident. In others, loose cargo can fall off the truck entirely and into the roadway, landing on other vehicles or in their paths, giving drivers no time to avoid it.
Determining Negligence in a Loose Cargo Accident
After an accident, you should prioritize your health and safety by seeking medical attention for any injuries as soon as possible. If you believe the truck driver was at fault for the accident, your next step should be to start collecting evidence from the crash that can prove negligence. If possible, you should take pictures of the truck, your vehicle, your injuries, and the loose cargo, as well as any road conditions that may have contributed to the accident.
You should also hire an attorney as soon as possible so he or she can help you obtain additional information from police reports and loading and inspection records from the trucking company. In a loose cargo accident, the trucking company and loading crews may share liability with the truck driver if they have failed to follow Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration loading requirements, and if you have evidence to support this, you can increase your chances of receiving the compensation you deserve.
Contact a Milwaukee Truck Accident Attorney Today
At Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin & Brown, LLP, we are familiar with the truck accidents that often occur on the busy highways around Milwaukee, and we know how to gather the evidence needed to identify all liable parties and build a case for compensation through a personal injury claim. Contact an experienced Milwaukee, WI personal injury lawyer today at 414-271-1440.