Often times, a company that ships freights must accept responsibility for a truck accident caused by improperly secured cargo. In some circumstances, the blame does not fall on the motor carrier that transports the goods nor on the driver that operates the truck. Thus, determining liability in a truck accident case can become complex.
In 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) filed a report declaring a 17 percent increase in the number of people injured in large truck crashes from 2013 to 2014. Therefore, understanding shipper liability is important if you are involved in a common highway accident due to unsecured cargo.
If either you or a loved one has been hurt in a truck accident due a shipper’s negligence, then contact Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. right away for a free consultation. Our Chicago truck accident lawyers have years of experience dealing with shipper liability cases and can help you recover the compensation you deserve for your losses.
What a Shipper Can Be Held Liable For
A shipper is required to make certain that the freight is properly loaded and secured aboard a motor carrier’s truck. This is critical to accident prevention and, even more importantly, to the safety of other motorists who share the highway with the truck.
The Uniform Bills of Lading Act, which the U.S. Uniform Law Commission adopted and passed in 1909, exempts a motor carrier from improper cargo loading when:
- A shipper loads the goods aboard the truck
- The bill of lading, which is a detailed list of a shipment of goods, clearly states that a shipper loaded the cargo
Therefore, the law states that a motor carrier does not carry responsiblilty for the count and condition of the freight placed aboard the truck if the driver neither counted nor loaded it. However, a shipper is held liable for an accident resulting from improperly loaded goods if the truck is sealed before a motor carrier receives the cargo. In this case, it is presumed that the shipper’s goods were in proper order at the time of a driver’s pick-up.
In addition, a shipper may be liable for an accident due to unsecured cargo if that shipper is also responsible for its transportation. In the event a shipper contracts an independent motor carrier, then the shipper could be held liable for negligent hiring if there was no inspection of the carrier’s minimum qualifications such as license, registration, and insurance.
For help with making a truck accident insurance claim, make sure to reach out to a Chicago truck accident lawyer at Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. right away.
Injured in a Truck Accident? Our Chicago Truck Accident Lawyers Can Help
Our Chicago truck accident lawyers at Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. can help you seek damages against a shipper if either you or a loved one were hurt in an accident caused by a load shift, overweight vehicle, or improperly secured cargo.
Our experienced lawyers thoroughly understand the ins and outs of Illinois law and can help you determine your rights in a truck accident insurance dispute and how to receive full and fair compensation. By filing a truck accident claim you may be able to receive compensation through a truck accident claim for any:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
If you were seriously hurt due to the negligence of someone else, you should not have to suffer. Our attorneys can fight for your rights and stand by your side throughout the entirety of the legal process so you can focus on your recovery.
Call Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. right away at (312) 236-2900 to schedule a free and confidential consultation with an experienced and knowledgeable attorney, and learn how an Illinois truck accident lawyer can help you with your case.