The Dangers of Flatbed Trucks
There are several kinds of commercial trucks on the roads and highways in Wisconsin and across the United States. All types of trucks pose the risk of serious injuries in the event of a truck accident; however, one kind of truck can cause particularly severe damage and injury—the flatbed truck. Flatbed trucks can lead to accidents in many different ways and anyone involved in a Wisconsin accident should contact an Appleton personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
Flatbeds Have Particularly Heavy Cargo
The heavier a vehicle is, the more time and distance it may require to slow a truck down or bring it to a stop. Flatbed trailers do not have walls or ceilings. Hence, trailers are able to carry oversized and heavy pieces of cargo. Examples of cargo on flatbed trucks can include heavy pieces of machinery, large loads of lumber or building materials, other motor vehicles including military tanks, or even entire houses. Heavy cargo can create challenges for a driver when stopping or slowing down. Drivers who are not properly trained or qualified to operate this type of truck may misjudge the distance they need to stop, which can lead to rear-end collisions and override accidents.
Due to the heavy weight of the cargo on a trailer, a flatbed truck's coupling may also fail and it can lead to a jackknife accident. In a jackknife, a trailer swings out perpendicular to the truck cab and the road. When a trailer swings out, it can hit any cars in its path and can also quickly cause a truck driver to lose control of his or her truck. Runaway trucks often leave catastrophic damage in their wake; affected victims can suffer life-threatening injuries including spinal injuries, traumatic brain injuries, burns, dismemberment and more.
Although a collision can certainly cause improperly secured cargo to come loose, there are other actions that may result in dangerous cargo spilling onto the roadway. For example, if a load is not properly secured, a trucker's sudden breaking or rapid acceleration may cause the cargo to shift and ultimately spill off of the truck and into the roadway. An improperly secured load may also shift while the truck is making a turn. Any of these actions can cause cargo to fall into the roadway and into the path of oncoming traffic, potentially leading to chain reaction collisions. Or, an improperly secured cargo load may even fall on top of another vehicle. This can cause devastating injuries to multiple motorists, all who may be entitled to substantial compensation from the negligent trucking company that owned the flatbed truck and/or hired the truck driver.
Contact a Wisconsin Truck Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
Commercial truck accidents are often extremely complex. Many parties may be involved and injured parties can suffer extensive injuries and property damage. Trucking companies, truck drivers, and other parties may be held liable for these losses, although victims must first sufficiently prove negligence on the part of one or more parties.
At Herrling Clark Law Firm Ltd., our qualified Appleton personal injury lawyers and Green Bay personal injury lawyers have the skill and resources to take on complex commercial truck cases and obtain substantial compensation for victims. We have four convenient office locations in Appleton, Green Bay, New London, and Oshkosh, so please call our office at 920-739-7366 for assistance today.