Trucking companies have a responsibility to comply with a raft of federal
regulations. These include rules on properly securing loads so as trucks
and the material they are carrying do not pose a danger to other road users.
Recently the importance of securing a load was demonstrated in South Carolina
when an unsecured sofa came off the back of a truck, causing an accident
between two charter buses.
The South Carolina Highway Patrol said a driver was fined for an unsecured
sofa that came off the back of his truck causing the accident. A driver
or a trucking company can also be liable in a personal injury action for
those who were injured in an accident caused by an obstruction in the road.
Lance Cpl David Jones said around 9 a.m. on March 28, a sofa in the middle
of I-20 East caused a charter bus to swerve to avoid it. Another bus behind
it also swerved to miss the couch. It rear-ended the bus in front.
WLTX19 reported on how a
second bus was carrying members of University of South Carolina's Beta
Theta Pi fraternity and their guests. Troopers said eight people were hospitalized. They went to the hospital
for stitches and x-rays, media reports stated.
Jones said state troopers later found the truck while directing traffic
into the Carolina Cup. The driver had a seat cushion that matched the
sofa that was found in the road.
State police said the truck driver rather than the bus drivers were at
fault for the crash. Investigators said drivers who have large objects
in your truck or on top of your car, should be sure to have them securely fastened.
You should fasten loads securely whether you are a commercial truck driver
or you have items in the back of a pick-up truck. However, there are specific
federal rules that relate to commercial trucking because these vehicles
often cross state lines.
In addition to relevant state laws and guidelines, these federal guidelines
and regulations apply to almost all aspects of the commercial trucking
business. There are strict rules as to rest periods for drivers as well
as safety equipment, and load measurements and balancing requirements.
When a tractor trailer is improperly loaded it may become unstable and
a danger to other road users.
If you are hurt by debris from a truck or a falling load, you may have
grounds to file a claim against the driver, the owner of the truck, a
trucking company, the company that loaded the truck and the broker or
agent who arranged the transportation.
Our personal injury lawyers have been
holding negligent truckers accountable for many years in South Carolina. Call us at 803.748.9990.