When a massive 80,000-pound truck is being driven in winds up to 40 miles per hour or stronger, the side of the trailer can catch the wind, making it extremely difficult for the driver to maintain control of the big rig. Heavy winds can cause the trailer to rock from side to side, which can result in the cargo shifting and becoming imbalanced. If the driver cannot regain control of the truck, it could rollover, causing potentially serious injuries to the driver, as well as massive property damage and life-threatening, fatal injuries to other drivers in the vicinity. Truck drivers and other motorists can avoid devastating truck accidents by knowing what steps to take when driving during heavy winds.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the following tips will help truck drivers avoid serious accidents related to high winds.
Pay close attention to weather reports. If high winds, or any other severe weather conditions are in the forecast, avoid driving if possible. If you must drive, make sure that your cargo is loaded properly, listen to weather warnings on the radio, and pull over if the conditions worsen.
Reduce your speed during inclement weather. Trucks require a longer distance to stop than passenger vehicles. Driving at a slower speed can reduce the likelihood of a wreck or make it less severe if an accident does happen.
Conduct a pre-trip inspection, making sure that all doors and exposed items are secure.
An empty trailer is particularly hazardous in high winds, so truck drivers are urged to stay off the road as this can be extremely dangerous for the truck drivers and other motorists.
Accidents Caused by Driver Negligence
While high winds alone can be very dangerous when driving a massive truck, driver negligence combined with severe winds can be particularly catastrophic. The following are examples of how truck drivers and trucking company negligence may be responsible for high wind-related accidents:
Improperly loaded trailer: A truck that is not loaded correctly is much more susceptible to high winds, and more likely to tip or rollover.
Speeding: A speeding truck is dangerous under any circumstances, but it is particularly dangerous when there are high winds, which makes controlling the vehicle, slowing down, and stopping that much more difficult.
Distracted driving: Driving during high winds requires the truck driver’s attention. If the driver is distracted while trying to maintain control of the truck, it can have devastating consequences.
Driving in bad weather: Truck drivers should adjust their speed or pull over if weather conditions become hazardous. Not doing so may be considered negligent if it results in an accident.
Maintenance and defective parts: If a part of the truck is defective, such as the brakes, tires, or other components, the manufacturer or maintenance facility may be held liable for any injuries resulting from an accident.
Baltimore Truck Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Seek Compensation for Truck Accident Victims
If you have been seriously injured in a truck accident, contact the Baltimore truck accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton as soon as possible. We will fight to secure the maximum financial compensation you deserve and ensure that your legal rights are protected. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent truck accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.