Trucking companies and truckers frequently overload their vehicles in hopes of delivering more product in a faster amount of time. The side effect of this abuse of regulations is that their vehicles are more difficult to operate and control, the brakes must work harder to bring the truck to a full stop and may fail, tires can become damaged and blow out, and the transmission burns out far more rapidly. In short, overloading is a potential cause of very nearly everything that can go wrong with a semi truck, and is worth pursuing as the potential cause of any given accident.
Tire damage is one of the most common results of overloading a vehicle. When the truck is overloaded, there is more pressure on the tire and air can escape more rapidly, causing low pressure, which will eventually lead to a blowout. Even the most experienced drivers have trouble controlling an enormous semi truck in the case of a blowout, and when the truck is already overloaded, it’s much harder to safely convey the truck off the road and out of harm’s way without any damage. If you’ve been in an accident as the result of a truck blowout, overloading may be the ultimate cause.
An overloaded truck puts more strain on the braking system, the steering, the transmission, and even the electrical system. The more strain, the more likely it is that any one of the mechanical systems of the truck will wear out mid-drive, causing an unexpected loss of control and causing the driver to endanger the vehicles around it. Again, since the truck is already overloaded, it is much more difficult for the driver to safely maneuver the vehicle off the road, which means that any mechanical failure is much more deadly than it would be without the addition of an overloaded cargo.
Usually, truck drivers and companies overload their trucks because they are behind schedule, and hoping to make up some time by getting their cargo from point A to point B in fewer trips. This means that it’s all too likely that the drivers aren’t just trying to make up their schedule in overloaded cargo: they may be working overtime, skipping their breaks, or driving too fast to make up lost time. Fatigued drivers make far more errors and have slower reaction times, and driving too fast with an overloaded cargo means it takes even more time to brake to a full stop. Avoiding other drivers or obstacles becomes far more difficult, as well.
In short, overloaded trucks cause many of the problems that lead to accidents, and it’s always worth investigating whether overloading was the cause of yours. This isn’t exactly work for an average civilian, though – and certainly not one who’s been recently injured. You’ll want an experienced lawyer who knows just what to look for to determine whether overloading was the original cause of your accident. Contact the Appel Law Firm.