When loaded up to their maximum capacity, commercial tractor-trailers can carry multiple tons of cargo over hundreds of miles in a single day, usually along roads and highways governed by a mixture of state and federal restrictions on maximum vehicle weight. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for individual trucker drivers or an entire commercial vehicle company to knowingly disregard these restrictions in the interest of saving money and time on routes. This is an irresponsible choice that can substantially increase the risk of a catastrophic accident.
Establishing that a commercial truck was overweight can be hard enough on its own, to say nothing of how challenging it can then be to prove a specific person or multiple specific people liable for overloading that truck. Fortunately, a dedicated commercial vehicle crash attorney can help with handling overloaded/overweight truck accidents in Leander as effectively as possible.
Both state and federal regulations set maximum limits on how much a semi-truck can weigh in total across its cab, trailer, and cargo combined—also known as its “gross weight.” Additionally, state and federal laws establish how much weight can be placed on each individual axle and trailer. Similarly, under federal law, which applies mainly to interstate highways as well as a few specially designated smaller roadways, the maximum gross weight a commercial truck can carry is 80,000 pounds, with additional maximum weight limits of 20,000 pounds per single axle and 34,000 pounds per tandem axle group.
State law imposes identical restrictions for most trucks traveling on state roads and highways, with additional maximum weight limits of 42,000 pounds for triple axle groups and 50,000 pounds for quad axle groups. However, provided they obtain a special permit, and their tires and other truck components are rated properly to carry them, truck drivers traveling exclusively within state borders can carry loads heavier than the usual limits. These regulations are serious, and any truck driver or trucking company that violates these weight limits may be subject to civil liability for damages stemming from an overweight truck crash in Leander.
Depending on the circumstances, there may be multiple parties who bear fault for a truck being overloaded and then getting into an accident. In general, blame will primarily lie with whoever held the most responsibility for the decision to load more cargo onto the truck than the law permitted. For example, either a trucking company that ordered their employees to carry overweight loads to save money or a third-party supplier who inadvertently overloaded a truck without informing the driver could face blame for an unexpected crash.
Regardless of who specifically is to blame the accident in question, anyone injured by an overloaded truck can target the negligent party and demand compensation for:
A seasoned lawyer in Leander can go into further detail about potentially recoverable damages after an overloaded/overweight truck crash.
Overweight trucks are a danger to their operators, to other drivers on the road, and often even to people near major highways. Anyone who knowingly or accidentally allows a commercial truck to travel with an illegally heavy load should be held accountable for any consequences their actions have, especially when this decision leads to catastrophic injuries.
A qualified lawyer can discuss your legal options following overloaded/overweight truck accidents in Leander over the course of a confidential consultation. Schedule yours by calling today.