Oversized Load Houston Truck Accident Lawyer

Oversized Load Houston Truck Accident Lawyer

Seeking a Free Consultation with one of Texas’ Houston Truck Accident Lawyers? Call the Big Rig Bull Texas Truck Accident Lawyer Reshard Alexander today at 713.766.3322.

Understanding Oversized Loads and Truck Wrecks

In road transport, an oversize load (or overweight load) is a load that exceeds the standard or ordinary legal size and/or weight limits for a specified portion of roadhighway or other transport infrastructure, such as air freight or water freight. In Europe, it may be referred to as special transport or heavy and oversized transportation. There may be load per axle limits. However, a load that exceeds the per-axle limits, but not the overall weight limits, is considered overweight. Examples of oversize/overweight loads include construction machines (cranes, front loaders, backhoes, etc.), pre-built homes, containers, construction elements (bridge beams, generators, windmill propellers, rocket stages, industrial equipment).

The legal dimensions and weights vary between countries and regions within a country. A vehicle that exceeds the legal dimensions usually requires a special permit that requires extra fees to be paid in order for the oversize/overweight vehicle to legally travel on the roadways. The permit usually specifies a route the load must follow as well as the dates and times during which the load may travel.

When a load cannot be dismantled into units that can be transported without exceeding the limitations in terms of the dimensions and/or mass, it is classified as an abnormal load. Another definition can be summarised as follows: an abnormal indivisible load (‘AIL’) is one that cannot be divided into two or more loads for transporting (on roads).[1] Also, breakbulk is used to define the freight that cannot be loaded into any ocean container or too large for air cargo.

Any road transport is framed by the CMR Convention (Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road),[2] which relates to various legal issues concerning transportation of cargo, predominantly by lorries, by road.

Cargo loading and securement

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Large Truck Crash Causation Study[3] 7% of U.S. trucking accidents are caused by improper cargo securement or cargo shifts. Shifting cargo can cause the truck to destabilize or the load can fall off completely leading to serious public safety issues.

Load shifting is prohibited by law and it is the responsibility of the shipper, motor carrier, driver, receiver and the securing device manufacturer to ensure that the cargo is completely secured.[4]

Seeking a Free Consultation with one of Texas’ Houston Truck Accident Lawyers? Call the Big Rig Bull Texas Truck Accident Lawyer Reshard Alexander today at 713.766.3322.

United States’ Definition of an Oversized Load

In the United States, an oversize load is a vehicle and/or load that is wider than 8 ft 6 in (2.59 m). Each individual state has different requirements regarding height and length (most states are 13 ft 6 in or 4.11 m tall), and a driver must purchase a permit for each state he/she will be traveling through. In many states, a load must be considered “nondivisible” to qualify for a permit (i.e. an object which cannot be broken down into smaller pieces), although some states allow divisible loads to be granted permits.[14]

Signaling When Driving An Oversized Load

In the United States, the owner of an Oversize Load often must hire a Pilot Car (flag or escort car) before the load can be moved on a public roadway. An Oversize Load may exceed one or all normal vehicle dimensions of weight, height, length, width and/or extend beyond the commonly-recognized perimeter of the Load vehicle. All Pilot Cars in an individual state must be uniformly identified with required durable, fade-resistant yellow OVERSIZE LOAD sign (on rooftop or the car’s position bumper) and amber flashing or rotating lights that are visible 360° and at least 100 feet (30 m) away. Those Pilot Cars may legally operate ahead of, behind or in any position relative to the Load that ensures the safe movement of the load vehicle and all assisting Pilot, Police and Utility vehicles that are necessary for the move.

The certified Pilot Car Operator protects people, vehicles and property by several actions. The simple presence of a Pilot Car warns other drivers and pedestrians. The Lead (front position) Pilot Car often has a calibrated High Pole (and depending upon the state, a durable, fade-resistant yellow sign) bolted to its front bumper. The High Pole is designed to collide with overpasses, power lines and tree branches that may be above the lane in which the Pilot Car and the Load are operating. The Lead Pilot Car Operator transmits radio messages to the Load and other necessary vehicles of overhead obstructions or road conditions that require the Load to alter its path or stop. Finally, a Pilot Car Operator may park the Pilot Car just off the roadway and direct traffic with a reversible Slow/Stop sign or orange flags while wearing a bright vest and hard hat.

Generally, the Lead Pilot Car Operator functions to maintain an assured clear distance – 12 to 1 mile (0.8 to 2 km) – ahead of the Load. The Lead Pilot Car Operator frequently transmits his lane position, road name, lack of overhead obstruction up to and including a landmark or building and direction of travel. The Lead Pilot Car Operator is expected to observe any obstruction or complication that may require the Load to alter its path and transmit clear instructions to the Load and other necessary vehicles. Hearing the transmission from the Lead Pilot car, the Rear Pilot Car Operator ensures that the desired lane is clear and moves the Rear Pilot Car to operate in the now-clear lane. The Rear Pilot Car Operator transmits the clear lane availability to the Load. After passing the obstruction, the Lead Pilot car Operator informs the Load that the Lead Pilot car is now operating in a specific lane as it passes a specific landmark or building. The Rear Pilot Car Operator ensures and transmits that the desired lane is currently clear and moves the Rear Pilot Car to operate in the now-clear lane.

Typically, the edges of any oversize load must be marked to make them visible to drivers. During daytime, the required marking is usually red flags, and during night white or yellow lights may be used. The hauling vehicle must have at least one flashing amber light in the front and back. Signs (yellow with black border in the United States, red and white diagonal stripes in the EU, and red and white vertical stripes in Canada), saying “Oversize load” must be put in the front and back of the vehicle.

Seeking a Free Consultation with one of Texas’ Houston Truck Accident Lawyers? Call the Big Rig Bull Texas Truck Accident Lawyer Reshard Alexander today at 713.766.3322.

The purpose of a Lead Pilot Car and How This Prevents Truck Wrecks

A Lead Pilot Car may follow a police car or Utility/Bucket Trucks. Pilot and trailing cars may be required also. Each must have at least one flashing amber light (visible 360 degrees at 500 feet (150 m)) on them. Their purpose is to observe all possible obstacles or impediments to the swift and safe transfer of the Load between two points and warn drivers about what’s approaching. The Lead Pilot Car warns approaching drivers in the opposite lane, and the trailing car warns any candidates to overtake or pass the Load. The driver of the pilot car must have a 2-way radio communication system (often CB radio or handheld FRS radios) to alert all members of the move about any low bridges, wires, obstacles, etc. The driver of the trailing car is responsible for the safety(?) while passing obstacles or overtaking slower vehicles.

Pilot Car Operators may:

  • Perform a Route Survey before the Load is moved
  • Curb the Pilot Car to act as a Flagger
  • Order the Load stopped for any reason
  • Use the Pilot Car to block traffic from passing the load.

Since the driver of the truck cannot see the end of the trailer or vehicles that may be present in the next lane (because the load obstructs the mirrors), the general procedure is as follows: The truck driver sees an obstacle and signals with his left (or right, if in a left-side traffic country) turn signal (aka “blinker”). The driver of the trailing car waits until the adjacent lane is clear and moves so that the truck driver sees his or her car, thus preventing anyone from standing next to the truck. Then the trailing car moves a little back to stay clear of the truck’s path. As soon as the trailer has cleared the obstacle, the trailing car again moves forward and flashes its headlights to inform the truck driver that it’s safe to return in their lane.[original research?] A pilot car driver may temporarily block traffic at intersections to ensure the safe passage of the truck.[15]

Seeking a Free Consultation with one of Texas’ Houston Truck Accident Lawyers? Call the Big Rig Bull Texas Truck Accident Lawyer Reshard Alexander today at 713.766.3322.

Hazards When Transporting 18 Wheeler Oversized Loads

This oversize truck struck overhead support and caused the I-5 Skagit River Bridge collapse.

Oversize loads present a hazard to roadway structures as well as to road traffic. Because they exceed design clearances, there is a risk that such vehicles can hit bridges and other overhead structures. Over-height vehicle impacts are a frequent cause of damage to bridges, and truss bridges are particularly vulnerable, due to having critical support members over the roadway. An over-height load struck the overhead beams on the I-5 Skagit River bridge in 2013, which caused the bridge to collapse.[16]

Oversized Load Houston Truck Accident Lawyer

Seeking a Free Consultation with one of Texas’ Houston Truck Accident Lawyers? Call the Big Rig Bull Texas Truck Accident Lawyer Reshard Alexander today at 713.766.3322.

It is advisable to consult an oversized load Houston truck accident attorney Reshard Alexander who will help determine liability and the right compensation amount that you should get for your injuries. The insurance company of the at-fault driver and motor carrier company may not be willing to pay for damages and I can help you with the negotiation process. Call me today at (713) 766-3322 for a free consultation.

Houston Truck Accident & Injury Guide

Texas Cause of Injury
Brake Failure
Dash Cam
Distracted Driver
Driver Fatigue
Drowsy Driving
Driver Drug Use
Drunk Driving
Falling Cargo
Headlight Defect
Highway Construction
Improper Maintenance
Lack of Inspection
Negligent Hiring
Negligent Retention
Oversized Load
Overweight Truck
Poor Planned Route
Poor Weather
Railroad Crossing
Reckless Driving
Speeding
Steering Failure
Texting While Driving
Tire Blow Out
Tow Hitch Defect
Unrealistic Schedule

Attorney Reshard AlexanderBig Rig Bull Texas Truck Accident Lawyer represents clients in all Texas counties, including: Harris County, Montgomery County, Fort Bend County, Brazoria County, Galveston County, Chambers County, Liberty County, Jefferson County, Grimes County, and Waller County; and all Texas cities, including: Houston, Aldine, Algoa, Alief, Alvin, Anahuac, Angleton, Atascocita, Bay City, Bayou Vista, Baytown, Bellaire, Brazoria, Brenham, Brookshire, Bryan, Cedar Creek, Waller County, Channelview, China TX, Clear Lake City, Cleveland TX, Clute, Columbus, College Station, Conroe, Crosby, Cypress, Dayton, Deer Park, Dickinson, Eagle Lake, East Bernard, Edna, El Campo, Elmgrove, Flatonia, Freeport, Fresno, Friendswood, Fulshear, Galena Park, Galveston, Ganada, Garden Villas, Hardin, Hempstead, Hillcrest, Hitchcock, Houston, Humble, Huntsville, Inez, Jacinto City, Jamaica Beach, Jersey Village, Katy, Kemah, Kingwood, La Marque, La Porte, La Salle, Lake Jackson, League City, Liberty TX, Liverpool, Livingston, Long Point, Louise, Longpoint, Lufkin, Magnolia, Meadows Place, Missouri City, Montgomery, Morgans Point, Moss Hill, Nacogdoches, Navasota, Nassau Bay, Needville, Pasadena TX, Pasdena, Pearland, Port Bolivar, Porter, Prairie View, Richmond, Rosenberg, Rosharon, San Leon, Seabrook, Schulenburg, Sealy, Shenandoah, Shoreacres, Southside Place, Spring, Spring Branch Stafford, Sugar Land, Sunny Side, Texas City, The Woodlands, Todd Mission, Tomball, Waller, Webster, West Columbia, Wharton, Willis, Winnie, and Woodlands.