Last week, a Nashville truck driver was critically injured passing through Indiana. According to a Columbus report, the truck driver was carrying wooden logs when it suddenly flipped over near Interstate 65, spilled the logs it was carrying and knocked over a pole with fiber optic cables. The driver was found unconscious at the scene due to a serious head injury and needed to be evacuated by helicopter to the nearest hospital.
Investigators have not released any further information regarding the accident, but reports show the semi-truck overturned near a curve in the road. That said, it is possible the truck was overloaded.
Overloaded Trucks are a Dangerous Safety Hazard
Both the logging industry and the truck driving industry are known as dangerous occupations. The standard logging truck is an 18-wheel semi-tractor with a detachable trailer that contains log racks and bunks. The truck is capable of hauling logs that can be up to 80 feet long. Typically, the overall weight load can be up to 80,000 pounds. That said, it stands to reason that when not loaded properly, trucks hauling logging material can pose a dangerous risk to any driver or pedestrian also on the road.
The truck’s cargo can pose a huge risk to other drivers if it comes loose and fall off of the truck, either on its own or due to an accident. Falling debris is a fairly common factor with overloaded trucks and can cause serious injuries to other drivers. Additionally, overloading a logging truck makes the semi-truck difficult to control at highway speeds and more difficult to stop in an emergency brake situation. Overloading also makes these trucks more susceptible to rollover accidents. If a truck has not received proper maintenance, the likelihood of an accident occurring due to overloading increases.
Truck Drivers and Employers Must Not Overload Logging Trucks
There are state and federal safety laws that determine weight limits for trucks and how cargo is supposed to be secured. Logging trucks, in particular, pose a risk to other drivers due to the chance of falling debris from the trailer. Truck drivers and truck companies have been known to cut corners in regards to safety in order to cash in on a few more bucks, and that is not acceptable. Serious accidents are often a result of this type of recklessness.
“’For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” Jeremiah 29:11