open container of the truck

Have you ever been driving down a bridge or through a tunnel, trapped behind a commercial vehicle whose supplies seemed only tenuously bound to the flatbed or to the roof? Items that seemed only very precariously attached to the truck or van itself? Not to confirm your worst fears, but this is actually a more real problem than you may even know. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 800 people are killed annually due to road debris accidents.

The fact is, tools and goods must be transported from Point A to Point B, every hour of every day. This is a very central tenet of the services-rendered industry, a mainstay and necessity for plumbers, carpenters, landscapers, tent companies, moving companies, glass and window corporations, etc. But if the ropes, bungee cords and belts fail, and release their cargo, that can cause massive sprays of parts and debris, littering highways with dangerous caltrops, navigating through which proves perilous for all other denizens of the road. Parts of the road infrastructure itself have also been known to chip off and scatter as well, which is an equally dangerous situation.

Such was the scenario near Secaucus, in February, when a shower of steel was sprayed across Route 3 after a tractor trailer carrying a crane collided with an overpass. Emergency workers who rushed to the scene saw a catastrophic mess, and found that a white van had bore the brunt of the carnage. The men inside the industrial van were pinned down, at their legs, by huge segments of steel. The two men were removed from the scene of the accident alive, though were brought to a nearby hospital in serious condition. Traffic was backed up for miles as the wreckage was eventually cleared.

A stranger story comes out of California: where, last month, a 25-foot construction trailer itself fell end-over-end onto a highway onramp. Amazingly, no one was injured when the gargantuan industrial vehicle, which was lade with aluminum gutter supplies, lost balance and tipped. The truck came to a rest completely upside-down, and though traffic in all directions was negatively affected, the driver and passenger escaped without injury.

Perhaps the most bizarre of all? An incident in Russia where an agricultural flatbed tipped, spilling its contents across an intersection. The contents? Approximately a dozen live cows. Luckily, in this case, both the cows and the driver survived.

Not all are so lucky however. In a tragic story, a Washington State family was killed when a concrete divider weighing tons fell from an overpass and crushed their pick-up truck. The husband and wife were traveling with their infant son, who was also killed, when the unimaginable happened. This heart-wrenching occurrence stresses the extreme importance of proper road maintenance and the devastating results of allowing road structures to fall into disrepair.

Kaplan Lawyers PC

As always, we at Kaplan Lawyers PC preach caution! Staying alert behind the wheel is your best bet for avoiding road debris. Installing an aftermarket fender onto the front of your car is another way to minimize the damage caused by road debris. Those on the commercial side of the equation should  be well-trained in load securement and thoroughly attentive to the security of their tools and supplies.

The roads of New York City are hazardous things to traverse. The tempo is pressurized, the other drivers oftentimes aggressive, and the twists and turns themselves often perilous and registering somewhere above-average on the scale of driving difficulty. Those unused to the high-stake conditions of Manhattan driving are often caught out of their depth, and overwhelmed on their first attempt at navigating the almost obstacle-course nature of the experience. And accidents are bound to happen. In a perfect world, items meant to say fixed would never dislodge, and you would never hear about any of the accidents we talked about above. Unfortunately, that is not the case, and every day, personal vehicles are struck by rogue debris or are sent careening out of control due to interaction with hazardous material strewn across the road. If you’ve been hurt, it is your right and responsibility to hire personal injury attorneys whom are deeply invested in your case. At Kaplan Lawyers PC, we have a long and proven track record of helping those in this particular type of need. We can help win compensation that will allay the financial burden of your medical bills and we can, definitively, set your mind at ease as you focus on recuperation. Our consultations are an easy way to get started, so contact us today.

At Kaplan Lawyers PC, the consultation is always free.