The Risks Associated with the Weight and Size of Tractor Trailers

Obviously, the size and the weight of tractor trailers and other big rig trucks are why truck accidents are incredibly dangerous. The average empty tractor trailer weighs approximately 30,000 pounds. Full truck loads average 50,000 pounds but our truck accident lawyers have seen cases with loads as heavy as 80,000 pounds. Tractor trailer combinations are typically 60-70 feet long and 8-9 feet wide.

tractor trailer accident

Besides the obvious risks associated with a vehicle that is at least 10 times heavier than your vehicle (the average passenger car weights approximately 3,000 pounds), there are also risks associated with heavy cargo shifting during the route. If a load is not adequately secured, it may shift during transit which can cause a truck accident because the imbalance in the load causes the truck to either flip or the driver otherwise loses control of the vehicle, typically during a turn or with the help of a gust of wind.

We have won millions of dollars in settlements and verdicts in truck accident case. Call 800-553-8082 or get a free on-line consultation.

Federal law places a burden on truck drivers to make sure the load is adequately secured. See 49 CFR Section 392.9. It is generally not a defense under this regulation for the truck driver to claim that someone else loaded the vehicle although shippers, manufacturers, and distributors may also be liable for truck accidents caused by load shifts. This federal regulation also requires the truck driver to regularly inspect the cargo during transit.

Loads are sometimes not adequately secured because the cargo itself is not secured or because it was loaded improperly. This often happens with trucks carrying cargo of varying weights. Obviously, prudence mandates loading the cargo with the heaviest objects on the bottom of the load. Loaders quickly throwing cargo on a tractor trailer often do not see it that way, however.

What is the Point of All of This?

Why are you telling us all of this? Are you just trying to fill up more truck accident pages. Well, the point is that these are the kinds of case trucking companies deny because they claim the crash was not the result of negligence. To get the real answers, you have to understand how big these loads can be and how they need to be secured.

Contact Us For a Free Consultation

If you are hurt in a serious accident or are the victim of medical malpractice, contact our team of lawyers to discuss your case.
Call us now for help at (800) 553-8082

You can also get a FREE no obligation on-line consultation.

Client Reviews

  • They quite literally worked as hard as if not harder than the doctors to save our lives.
    ★★★★★
  • Ron helped me find a clear path that ended with my foot healing and a settlement that was much more than I hope for.
    ★★★★★
  • Hopefully I won't need it again but if I do, I have definitely found my lawyer for life and I would definitely recommend this office to anyone!
    ★★★★★
  • The last case I referred to them settled for $1.2 million.
    ★★★★★
  • I am so grateful that I was lucky to pick Miller & Zois.
    ★★★★★
  • The entire team from the intake Samantha to the lawyer himself (Ron Miller) has been really approachable.
    ★★★★★
  • The case settled and I got a lot more money than I expected. Ron even fought to reduce how much I owed in medical bills so I could get an even larger settlement.
    ★★★★★
  • Miller and Zois is the best firm in the state of Maryland, and without their support, understanding, and just being there when I needed encouragement, I truly do not know how I would have succeeded without them.
    ★★★★★