Debris flying off dump trucks is a growing concern and drivers need to know who is responsible, reports NBC17.
Our North Carolina car accident attorneys in Gastonia know that falling debris is a serious risk on our roadways. An object hitting your windshield is not only frightening but can obstruct your view and cause a serious Charlotte car accident.
Most road debris accidents are caused by motorists panicking and swerving to miss the object. This often leads to deadly accidents. Drivers can also be injured when debris smashes through a windshield.
Do you know who is responsible when objects fly off trucks and damage your vehicle? You may think the truck is not responsible when clearly written on the back is the warning, “Stay back. Not responsible for windshield damage.” But this is not true. North Carolina law clearly states that trucks are responsible for keeping their cargo inside their vehicle. A truck’s load cannot fall, drop, sift, leak, blow, or otherwise escape. North Carolina Highway Patrol authorities see accidents weekly caused by debris flying off dump trucks. They report that most drivers think they are responsible for the damage because the signs on the trucks indicate the truck driver is not at fault. If your car is damaged by flying debris from a truck, get as much information as possible from the truck so you can file a report, authorities advise. Regulating signs on dump trucks will be reviewed by Transportation Chair Rep. Frank Iler.
New research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety indicates that objects unintentionally ejected from vehicles onto the roadway cause more than 25,000 crashes per year in North America, resulting in 80 to 90 deaths.
“Although vehicle-related road debris (VRRD) crashes are generally less severe than other crashes, individual incidents can be catastrophic,” says Peter Kissinger, president and CEO of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. “Moreover, many of the estimated 25,000 VRRD crashes can be prevented if truckers and motorists secure their loads properly and report debris that they encounter on the road.”
A survey of road crews in the U.S. and Canada showed the three most common forms of VRRD include garbage from waste haulers, tire treads, and lumber and construction materials.
Recommendations to prevent VRRD crashes and minimize impact when they occur:
-Teach motorists to report unsafe vehicles, road debris and unsecured loads.
-Teach motorists defensive driving techniques in the event of a tire and wheel separation.
-Teach fleet maintenance personnel how to prevent wheel separations.
-Commercial vehicle drivers should periodically check their vehicles and cargo.
-Train law enforcement on vehicle load securement and safety and enact harsher laws on load securement.
If you or someone you love has been involved in a car or truck accident, contact the Lee Law Offices, P.A. today for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-887-1965.
More Blog Entries:
Victims and Survivors of Truck Accidents in North Carolina and Elsewhere Look to Revise Trucking Regulations, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, May 27, 2011
Weight Restrictions Could Reduce Trucking Accidents in Hickory, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, May 19, 2011
Motorists Support Worldwide Effort to Reduce Traffic Fatalities in North Carolina, throughout the Country, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, May 8, 2011