Oversized Loads and Truck Accidents in South Fulton

When it comes to investigating a truck crash, things can get extremely complicated. A South Fulton truck accident lawyer will leave nothing to chance. And this includes finding out if the truck carried an oversized load.

Let us explain how this aspect can influence both the dynamics of the truck accident and the legal aspect of filing a claim for damages.

What Is Defined as an Oversized Load?

Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) limits standard legal loads and dimensions for trucks at:

  • 100 ft length, including overhand
  • 8 ft 6 in width
  • 13 ft 6 in height
  • 80,000 pounds weight

Trucking companies that wish to transport heavier loads across the state of Georgia must apply to the GDOT for a routine permit, which allows them to transport oversized loads with the following specifications:

  • Under 120 ft length
  • Under 12 ft width
  • Under 14 ft height
  • under 110,000 pounds weight

For heavier loads and bigger vehicles, it is necessary to obtain a special permit which requires the presence of an escort pilot car.

The Role of Oversized Loads in Truck Accidents

Now, you may wonder how an oversized load may play a role in a traffic accident. First of all, if the truck exceeds the standard dimensions, it can hit an underpass, vehicles in a different lane, or even stationary vehicles parked on the side of the road. This can cause catastrophic accidents.

Also, the truck driver may not be aware that an overloaded truck will need a longer distance to come to a full stop after applying the brakes.

Moreover, if the load is not properly secured, some of the items may become loose and fly off the truck, hitting the vehicles behind and on each side of the truck.

Last but not least, if the load is not distributed evenly inside the trailer, the driver may lose control over the truck, resulting in a jackknifing accident.

overloaded trucks may cause traffic accidents

Establishing Liability for a Truck Accident Caused by Oversized Load

If you want to obtain fair compensation after this type of accident, you need to consult with an experienced South Fulton truck accident lawyer. In most of these situations, it is possible to prove that the liability is shared by the truck driver and other legal entities, such as:

  • the trucking company
  • the cargo owner
  • the truck maintenance and repair company

In order to determine all the liable parties, the attorney will check:

  • if the truck had a routine or special permit for oversized load
  • if the actual load of the truck matches the waybill accompanying the goods
  • if the truck driver complied with the federal regulations on hours of service
  • if the cargo was evenly loaded and secured inside the trailer

The lawyer may have to issue applications to access the trucker’s electronic log book and the vehicle’s EDR (a type of black box equipped on vehicles, recording the driver’s actions before a crash).

Steps to Take after a Truck Accident to Maximize Your Chances of Compensation

It is important to remember that your actions after a truck crash can influence the outcome of your future claim. You should do the following things:

  • report the accident to the police and remain at the crash scene
  • take detailed photos and videos of the accident scene, including details on the truck cargo
  • exchange insurance and contact information with the trucker and ask if they are an employee of the trucking company or an independent contractor
  • ask for an ambulance or arrange to be taken to the nearest hospital for first aid and complete diagnostic tests
  • do not sign any document presented by an insurance adjuster and do not discuss with them about the accident without a lawyer
  • stay away from social media, as insurance companies can access your posts and use them to prove that you are not as severely injured as you claim

Discuss Your Claim with an Experienced South Fulton Truck Accident Lawyer!

Oversized loads can contribute to a truck accident and in this case, the cargo owner and the trucking company may be liable for your damages. However, you will need an experienced South Fulton truck accident lawyer to prove their liability and negotiate fair compensation on your claim.

As a new client, you benefit from a free case evaluation, so call us today at 678-825-6004!

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