Truck Accident Lawyer for Wrecks Caused by Unsecured Loads


A truck’s unsecured load is dangerous and may contribute to avoidable accidents and catastrophic injuries. Our award-winning truck accident lawyers can help you pursue the justice and compensation you deserve when you or a loved one has been harmed. We’ve collected over $1 billion for clients. You pay no fees unless you win.

Call Wilshire Law Firm for assistance at (800) 501-3011 any time of the day or night to schedule a free case review.

How a Truck Attorney for Unsecured Load Accidents Can Help

Our accomplished truck accident attorneys at Wilshire Law Firm put your case front and center. We first investigate your incident thoroughly by doing the following:

Automobile aftermath following a collision with a heavy truck.
  • We examine the crash site. Our investigators check for location, road marks, and other prevailing issues. We also check for sun intensity at the same time as the accident, roadway conditions and signs. If untended foliage obscures traffic signs, the city may be partly responsible for the crash. In this case, the time limit to file a claim differs from other personal injury claims. Your truck crash attorney will ensure that all documents will be on time.
  • Our investigators check for video cameras atop traffic lights and at surrounding businesses. If present, this video would show the accident happening in real-time and is helpful to the case.
  • We interview witnesses. Often, witnesses see the accident happening. We interview them and obtain their contact information for future reference.
  • Our trained investigators review the police report. This document contains information about the accident and its location, provides crash diagrams, and records any citations the driver received. For example, if an impaired driver were responsible for the impact, this information would be on the police report. This information can be beneficial in supporting your claim.
  • Investigators perform accident reconstruction. This procedure shows the speed and movements of involved vehicles before, during, and after the accident. We use this analysis to determine who is at fault for the crash.
  • We check tire tread depth. Tire tread depth evaluates skid marks on the road and measures a car’s stopping distance. This technique helps investigators understand how fast a vehicle went before the crash.

Our legal team regularly uses evidence from trusted investigators to build a strong case for the injured clients we represent. We’re ready to hear your important story and review your claim for free. Call us 24/7 to get started.

Truck Driver Liability in an Unsecured Load Accident

Several parties could be liable in an unsecured load accident. They are:

  • Trucker: If the truck driver fails to take appropriate measures to tie down the cargo and it falls to the road, they could be liable for damages. The driver must also check the shipment periodically during the trip to ensure it remains secure. Bumps in the road, stretched tie-downs, and faulty hooks can all cause the load to slip.
  • Trucking company: Truck owners are responsible in several ways. For instance, defective or worn tie-downs could cause an accident. The company monitors its equipment and trains truckers to secure their loads correctly. If not done, the company is at fault.
  • Third-party cargo loaders: The trucker or trucking company often engages a third-party company to load the truck. They could be liable for using damaged, worn, or defective equipment to secure the load. However, the truck owner or driver is still responsible for securing the cargo.

What Compensation and Damages Am I Entitled To?

When an unsecured load causes a commercial vehicle accident, the following financial damages are typically possible:

  • Lost wages: The earnings lost due to an accident can be recoverable in a successful lawsuit. These include salaries, bonuses, and commissions the injured party would earn.
  • Medical expenses: This category covers medical care associated with the accident, such as hospital costs, emergency room expenses, doctor’s fees, medication, and nursing services outside the hospital. The claim also includes assistive devices such as wheelchairs and ramps.
  • Pain and suffering: This compensation covers the physical pain, suffering, emotional distress, disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment in life caused by the injury.
  • Property damage: Compensation for damage to a vehicle can be part of the lawsuit.
  • Punitive damages: This category includes a different sort of financial recovery. It is not compensatory but is used to punish a driver or owner due to egregious negligence. In some cases, it also keeps the same thing from happening again.

Our team of more than 400 professionals is ready to help with your case. Give us a call 24/7 to sign up for your free case evaluation.

Driving with an Unsecured Load Increases Risk of a Commercial Vehicle Crash

A large study by the AAA Foundation for Roadway Safety showed that approximately 25,000 accidents were due to debris on the road in 2001.[1] The study noted that debris fell from large trucks and smaller vehicles, mostly on interstate highways, with crashes resulting in 90 deaths. Since cars traveled at highway speeds in the study, serious injuries were likely even with small debris. 

Trailers stacked with rolls of straw, organized and ready for use.

In this and subsequent studies, it became clear that accidents happened four times more often if debris existed. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association database reported that in 2016, there were 90,266 accidents, 19,663 injuries, and 683 deaths because of unsecured loads.[2]

Trucker Negligence Contributes to Unsecured Load Accidents

There are many reasons for truck accidents involving cargo falling onto the road. Trucking driver or trucking company negligence is nearly always involved.

Here are some of the leading causes of such accidents:

  • Unsecured cargo: The shipment can shift and fall off the vehicle by driving with an unsecured load. Motorists following the truck can crash into the debris, physically harming the occupants.
  • Overloading: Unsecured, heavy cargo can tip a truck, causing the shipment to fall.
  • Unbalanced load: With an unbalanced load, the risk of instability increases. Most authorities recommend loading 60 percent of the cargo in the front of the trailer. [3]
  • Unsafe driving: Speeding and other unsafe maneuvers can cause cargo to become unbalanced and shift off the truck onto the roadway. An example occurs when a driver travels through a curve at a higher speed and tips because of a cargo shift.
  • Defective ropes or tie-downs: It is crucial to check them for defects. If found, replacement is necessary.
  • Lack of truck maintenance: Failing to maintain brakes and other systems can affect driver control. For example, failed brakes might make it impossible to stop. As the trucker loses control, the cargo might shift and fall from the truck.
  • Open cargo area: Some trucks have open cargo areas that require a cover. When left uncovered, debris can fall off the vehicle, especially with high winds or speed.
  • Inadequate driver training: Not all drivers or third-party cargo loaders are trained correctly on how to load a truck. Failing to prepare or use inexperienced personnel is negligent.
  • Poorly designed trucks:  The truck design is essential in terms of loading. If the design is poor, cargo may not load properly.

Unsecured Load Definition

An unsecured load is cargo that is not properly secured to a commercial truck. This can include loads that are not tied down, not covered, or not properly balanced. Unsecured loads can be a hazard to other drivers and pedestrians and can cause property damage, injuries, or even fatalities.

Some examples of unsecured loads include:

  • A load of bricks that is not tied down and is shifting around in the back of a truck.
  • A load of lumber that is not covered and is blowing around in the wind.
  • A load of hay that is not properly balanced and is leaning over the side of a truck.

Types of Accidents Due to an Unsecured Load and Road Debris

Certain types of accidents are due to road debris more often than others. They are:

  • Rollovers: This type of accident is common when road debris is present. It occurs when the vehicle flips over due to an uneven surface or becomes destabilized by collision with the debris.
  • Head-On Collisions: These types of accidents occur when two vehicles going in opposite directions collide. Road debris can cause one of the vehicles to swerve into the other, leading to a head-on collision.
  • Rear-End Collisions: In a rear-end collision when a vehicle in front suddenly stops, and the car behind cannot brake in time, causing them to crash. Road debris can cause an unexpected stop by the lead vehicle.
  • Side-Impact Collisions: This type of accident occurs when a car encounters debris from another vehicle. Road debris can be a factor in these types of accidents.
  • Multi-vehicle crashes: This accident occurs when a driver tries to avert debris and swerves into another vehicle, causing a trickle effect. Depending on the number of cars affected, a pile-up can ensue.
  • Vehicular damage: Road debris can damage a vehicle’s undercarriage. This damage can cost excessive money and lead to subsequent problems such as brake damage.
  • Sideways movement: Occasionally, the vehicle can be thrown sideways by the debris, impacting another car.

Injuries From Road Debris Accidents

Many different injuries occur in a road debris-associated accident. Some of the most frequently seen are:

  • PTSD: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can occur after a car crash, caused by psychological trauma from the incident. Symptoms may include flashbacks and nightmares.
  • Traumatic brain injuries: This type of injury can occur when projectile debris flies into the windshield and enters the vehicle. It can cause a penetrating TBI. Otherwise, it can cause a closed head injury, meaning there is no external damage, although the brain hits the hard inner surface of the skull.
  • Whiplash: This injury occurs when debris causes an unexpected impact, causing a rapid back-and-forth movement of the head and neck. Muscle damage can lead to pain, confusion, and headaches for up to two years.
  • Soft tissue injuries: Soft tissue damage, such as bruising and broken bones, can occur in a crash.
  • Burns: Thermal burns from car fires or explosions can cause permanent disfigurement and physical and emotional trauma.
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder: PTSD can occur after a severe accident. The injured party may relive the trauma and become less functional psychologically.
  • Wrongful death: A fatality ensues in some accidents due to unsecured loads. The family can file a wrongful death lawsuit, allowing the deceased’s loved one to obtain financial compensation.

Disclaimer: The above injury information does not constitute medical advice. When injured, always seek professional help for further medical evaluation.

Crashes Involving Unsecured Truck Loads May Justify an Injury Lawsuit

If unsecured cargo spilling on the road caused your injuries in a truck accident, you could challenge the driver’s or company’s negligent behavior by filing a truck accident injury lawsuit.

At Wilshire Law Firm, our qualified unsecured truck load lawyers work hard to obtain justice and the compensation our clients deserve. We believe no one should suffer financial harm due to another’s mistake. We can schedule a free case review so you can get to know our legal team, ask questions, and learn what options you have moving forward. 

Our personal injury attorneys have helped clients obtain significant jury awards and settlements. Wilshire Law Firm does this with an experienced legal team covering dozens of practice areas, calling on seasoned investigators, and immense resources to see the case through to the end.

There is no initial cost; we work on a contingency basis, and you pay no fees unless you win.

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By submitting this form, you agree to receive telephone calls and text messages at anytime, which include hours outside of business hours (8:00 a.m. PST - 9:00 p.m. PST). This is so that we may reach you as soon as possible in order to consult on your potential case.