More Trucks, Bigger and Higher Loads, Translate to More Accidents
Jan 6, 2015
Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 12, 2015 – The more big rigs on the road hauling higher loads, the more accidents happen. More accidents mean more injuries and deaths.
With the construction and oil boom in Texas comes far more heavy-duty truck traffic carrying everything from backhoes to crane parts, from oil rigging to large excavation equipment. “It is no surprise that on a fairly regular basis a truck rams into a bridge, misses a sharp corner due to the load being off balance, and turns over on its side, or gets jammed under a bridge overpass, unable to move. Accidents like this can be deadly,” pointed out Bobby Lee, of Austin’s personal injury law firm Lee, Gober & Reyna.
One such recent accident involved a backhoe, loaded on the flat deck of an 18-wheeler, hitting a bridge between Wayside and McCarthy in the Houston area. When hauling backhoes, it is common practice to stow the arms angled and tucked in to their lowest point. That was not the case in this incident and the arms were higher than they should have been. Luckily, the only harm done was to the bridge.
Bridges in the area are taking a real beating, especially within the Loop 610 where numerous bridges have scars to tell the tales of poorly stowed loads, and where a record of a number of deaths have occurred at their abutments.
Permits for hauling larger loads are mandatory and trucking companies know this. However, those same companies may have already hauled larger than usual loads many times without reprisal. For this reason, companies honor permits more in the breach and see them as another expense to be cut where possible. According to Texas A&M Transportation Institute researcher Dan Middleton, trucking companies know they need permits to haul larger loads, but “some just don’t care.”
“The major issue here is not just the higher accident rate,” said Lee, “it has to do with the complexities of permitting, policing and trying to keep track of larger-than-normal loads. Carriers are doubling up to maximize their transport time and reduce the number of trips made to save money – a move that may cost someone their life.”
The economy in the Houston area is on a significant upward swing, and has resulted in increased truck traffic. In 2013 there were 26 reports detailing lost loads along the highways and byways around Houston. In 2014 there has been a jump in lost load reports to 36.
“For those who have been involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler, or have perhaps been hit by a lost load, seek the legal counsel of a seasoned trucking accident attorney. These cases often have complex jurisdictional issues and you need a lawyer to help you seek compensation for your injuries,” Lee added.
To learn more, visit http://www.lgrlawfirm.com
Lee, Gober & Reyna
11940 Jollyville Road #220-S
Austin, Texas 78759
- Driving drunk never has a good ending
Recently, a nine-year-old girl lost her life when a drunk driver hit the vehicle in which she was riding. The girl’s mother sustained a broken shoulder and collapsed lung as a result of the collision. The 41-year-old man who collided with the SUV was arrested and faced charges of murder, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and DWI. When the man was arrested at the scene of the accident, he informed police that he had consumed three beers prior to getting into his vehicle to drive home. Despite the efforts of drunk driving campaigns, drinking and driving remains one of […]
- Texting truckers are accidents waiting to happen
It is a well-known fact that texting and driving can kill. However, this fact has not stopped big-rig drivers from texting while working. A huge commercial truck that hits another car does not leave much hope for the survival of the person behind the wheel of the other vehicle. According to the Virgina Tech Transportation Institute, texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in an accident. Texting is a deadly distraction that kills, yet it is not often regarded as a severe crime. Supposedly, it does not impair a driver’s judgment, it just distracts the driver. This […]
- Cellphone legislation does not make drivers safer
No matter what type of legislation is in place to deal with distracted driving, it is never enough. Written words do not make drivers any safer. In fact, despite new laws, law enforcement campaigns and insurance campaigns, the death toll due to texting while driving continues to climb. Federal statistics indicate that 3,328 people died and 421,000 sustained serious injuries in 2012 as a result of involvement in an accident where one or both drivers were driving distracted. The most common distractions were noted to be talking on a cellphone, surfing the internet, texting and eating. These figures prompt lawmakers […]
- Bikers at high risk for fatal accidents on U.S. roadways
The Department of Transport (DoT) recently revealed some frightening information about motorcycle accidents. The DoT report showed that 4,612 bikers were killed in 2011. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NTHSA) has stated that this is a 2 percent hike in fatalities from 2010. Motorcycle collisions are becoming more frequent as larger numbers of drivers opt to reduce gas consumption by buying motorcycles to ride to work. Across the nation, motorcycles only make up about 3 percent of all registered vehicles on the roads. However, bikers are involved in a shockingly high number of accidents. Just slightly more than 50 […]
- Pennsylvania may have a workable solution to prevent repeat drunk driving offenses
Pennsylvania has come up with what may be a reasonable solution to deal with repeat drunk driving offenses. In a bid to keep first-time offenders from becoming repeat offenders (and to keep repeat offenders off the roads), the state’s proposed bill would mandate that drunk drivers use ignition interlock devices and blow a sample every time they start their vehicle. In 2013, more than 5,600 ignition interlock devices were installed in vehicles in Pennsylvania. But more than 48,200 Pennsylvanians were arrested for DUI. By making these devices mandatory after a first offense, the state aims to decrease the number of […]