Colorado Springs Overloaded Truck Accident Attorneys
Truck accidents in all forms are devastating. They often involve multiple lanes of traffic, intense injuries, and totaled vehicles. Overloaded trucks, however, have the added danger of their extra 20-30,000 pounds. That extra weight can turn what was already a severe accident into a life-changing one. Those victimized by the accident are likely to walk away with costly disabilities if they walk away at all.
We at The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. understand the fear, hopelessness, and stress that you are currently going through. A truck accident is no easy tragedy to live through or to lose a loved one to. If you need a legal professional to help you get the compensation you deserve, call our firm at (719) 475-2555. Our Colorado Springs overloaded truck accident attorneys can do the heavy lifting so that you can recover in peace.
Colorado, like most other states, has strict laws when it comes to truck weight. This is in order to protect the truckers, as well as the people they share the road with. Trucking companies operating in Colorado, or sending their trucks through the state, must be aware of these laws and must follow them closely, otherwise, they are liable for any resulting accidents and damages.
Some key weight laws include:
- If a truck is carrying cargo that is a rolling risk, such as with logs, then the driver and loaders must be sure to properly restrain the cargo with cradles, chocks, and wedges.
- Cargo must always be securely fastened when the truck is in motion.
- Trucks with cargo that stick out further than four inches from the back or extend further than the sides must mark the edges of the cargo with flashing lights and reflective tape.
- Trucks may not exceed 85,000 pounds without special permission granted via a permit.
- Trucks granted an overload permit may not exceed 110,000 pounds.
- A truck’s axels may not carry more than 20,000 pounds each.
If these laws are not followed, and an overloaded truck becomes involved in an accident, then the damages caused by the accident can be absolutely catastrophic. Defying these laws is also an act of negligence that can make a truck driver and their parent company liable in a personal injury claim.
You may be wondering why a truck would be anymore dangerous at 100,000 pounds than it already is at 80,000 pounds. Why is an overloaded truck an issue if it already weighs so much? Well, that extra 20,000 pounds changes a lot about the truck’s balance. It can make it more difficult for the driver to take turns, come to a complete stop, and slow down in order to avoid other vehicles or objects in the road.
On top of that, when an overloaded truck does become involved in an accident, the fallout is unimaginable. Overloaded trucks can easily crush traditional passenger vehicles during rollovers, as well as the people inside said vehicles. These kinds of truck accidents often result in:
- Brain damage
- Broken and fractured bones
- Spinal cord injuries
- Crush injuries
- Severe burns
- Organ damage
- Extreme lacerations
- Internal bleeding
These kinds of injuries can completely change a victim’s life, and oftentimes victims do not walk away from an accident at all. Due to the sheer size and weight of an overloaded truck, such accidents often prove to be fatal. In these cases, a surviving family member may be able to file a wrongful death claim, instead of a personal injury claim, in order to recover financial compensation and hold the negligent party who caused the accident accountable. But with either type of claim, the first step is determining who is at fault for the accident.
Shipping is not a one-person job. You need drivers, loading teams, managers, and mechanics to ensure that a shipment gets to its destination intact and on time. That also means that when something goes wrong, there is a long chain of people who may or may not be at least partially liable. In order to determine liability, your attorney will need to investigate the facts of your case and circumstances around the collision. However, when it comes to overloaded trucks, there are usually a few likely liable parties.
The driver: Truck drivers are legally required to weigh their truck at weigh stations, which are located along most major highways and interstates. These facilities make sure that trucks do not become overloaded. Drivers are also often partially responsible for the loading of the truck, as they help the loading team or do the loading themselves. They may even notice that a truck is overloaded after traveling a few miles and should check to see if there is any extra cargo. If a driver neglected to weigh their truck, or knowingly overloaded it, then they would be considered liable for any resulting accident.
The company: When it comes to shipments, trucking companies and suppliers can often make more money overloading a single truck than sending multiple shipments. This means that many trucking companies are tempted to pack as much into their trucks as possible despite the safety risks. In such cases, a company can be considered negligent for overloading a truck and be legally responsible for any damages caused in an accident.
The loading team: With larger companies, loading teams are often responsible for getting cargo onto a truck. If one of these teams overloaded the truck or failed to secure cargo, then they would be liable for the resulting accident.
When it comes to any auto accident, there are two main categories that you can draw compensation from. The first is economic damages. This category includes all monetary losses you may have suffered, including medical bills, property damage to your car, and lost wages from time off work. Economic damages usually have a clear price tag and are a good place to start when calculating how much you should be given in compensation.
The second category is non-economic damages. Essentially, this group allows you to receive compensation for things that don’t have a clear-cut monetary value. That means you may still be able to recover damages for your emotional trauma, pain and suffering, and lowered quality of life. Of course, you are unlikely to recover any damages if you are not working with the right attorney.
When a trucking company or driver acts negligently and people become hurt as a result of their actions, they should be held responsible. No one should e able to get away with negligence, especially when that negligence destroys people’s lives. That is why, if you have been injured in an overloaded trucking accident, you should not hesitate to reach out to The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. We have represented numerous clients throughout Colorado and our trial attorneys can provide thorough legal guidance during a difficult time in your life. For a compassionate but strong legal team, call (719) 475-2555 to schedule a free consultation with a skilled Colorado Springs truck accident attorney. We want to fight for you.