What if My Crash Was Due to an Object Falling Off a Passing Vehicle?

Posted on behalf of Jeff Pitman on October 15, 2021 in Car Accidents
Updated on April 24, 2024

luggage tied to top of a carNo one likes to end up driving behind a vehicle that looks like it is carrying too much cargo or a load that is not properly secured. If an object from a car or debris from a truck suddenly flew off and hit your vehicle, it could lead to a serious collision. This type of traffic accident is not uncommon, but trying to seek compensation for injuries and other losses can be complicated.

PKSD handles complex injury claims like this every day. If you have become a victim of someone else’s negligence, contact our Milwaukee-based vehicle crash lawyers for help. Your initial consultation is completely free – and there is no obligation to file a claim.

Need a trusted and experienced lawyer? Call 414-333-3333 today.

Can I File a Claim for Damages if Flying Debris Caused Me to Crash?

Typically, if something flew off and hit your vehicle, the reason is that the load was not properly secured. This means that most likely, you will have a claim for damages. However, you can find out for sure by discussing the specific details of your situation with one of our licensed attorneys.

Although a claim for this type of crash may often be against the driver of the vehicle that was carrying the cargo, other liable parties could include:

  • The person – or company – responsible for loading and securing the vehicle
  • The manufacturer for a defective strap or chain used to secure the load
  • The driver, owner or employer of a trucking company who loaded the vehicle

If you have collision coverage, which is optional in Wisconsin, you may also be able to file a claim through your own insurer for your vehicle damage. However, the compensation you receive will be limited to either the cost of the repair or the pre-crash value of your vehicle.

Does Wisconsin Have Laws About Securing Cargo on a Motor Vehicle?

Yes, Wisconsin does have laws for securing cargo, both for commercial and passenger vehicles.

Drivers or commercial companies are required to properly load and secure any cargo placed in or on their vehicles under state law. This means taking steps to ensure items will not shift, come loose or fall off while being transported. These laws apply whether you are a passenger vehicle loading household objects onto your car or a commercial vehicle transporting cargo.

Like all injury claims, however, the burden of proof is on the injured victim (the plaintiff). To establish negligence, the plaintiff must be able to prove that:

  • The driver carrying the cargo owed you a duty of care
  • That duty of care was breached because the load was not properly secured
  • This violation directly led to the crash that caused your injuries
  • You sustained quantifiable damages – such as medical costs or lost wages

Even without these laws, drivers owe a duty of care to prevent causing others on the road any harm. The challenge is how to establish negligence. This is where hiring a lawyer can help. A qualified and experienced attorney knows how to gather the necessary evidence that will help to strengthen your claim.

Can Drivers Avoid Being Hit By Another Vehicle’s Cargo?

While avoiding every potential hazard is not possible, there are steps drivers can take to reduce the risk of being hit by an object that may fall from a passing vehicle.

If you end up traveling behind, near or next to a vehicle with cargo that looks unsafe, you can:

  • Remain alert for hazards or debris that may already have fallen onto the road
  • Take steps to safely pass a vehicle carrying cargo or unsecured household objects, if possible
  • If you cannot safely pass, slow down and put distance between you and the vehicle in front of you
  • Leave additional space in adjacent lanes in case you have to suddenly swerve to avoid an object
  • Do not tailgate or follow too closely to this vehicle, as this could increase the risk of a crash and make you partially liable

Injured in a Crash Caused by Flying Debris? Call PKSD for Legal Help Today

If you were injured because someone had a poorly secured mattress or other items on their car that flew off and caused you to crash, we are ready to help.

At PKSD, you can rely on years of experience and our commitment to helping injured victims. We have handled many types of car crashes and obtained millions in compensation for our clients.

Contact our law offices today to find out about your potential legal options. There is no charge for your initial consultation, and if we represent you, there are also no upfront costs to pay. We only get paid if we are successful in winning your case.

Call today to speak with one of our trusted lawyers. 414-333-3333

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