Losing cargo from your trailer, or losing the trailer itself, is not something to take lightly. A Lafayette man lost his life in a November 2016 crash east of Lafayette on I-10. The 25-year-old died and a Florida woman suffered serious injuries while trying to move cargo from the roadway.
This crash emphasizes the importance of properly securing your cargo, and following all rules, regulations, and best practices when towing a trailer. Unsecured and lost cargo can cost lives.
What caused the crash?
The woman injured in the crash was traveling toward Lafayette on I-10 westbound when the rented trailer she was towing behind her SUV detached. The trailer came to rest in the far right lane of the interstate.
The woman stopped on the shoulder and got out of her car to attempt to move the trailer from the roadway. The Lafayette man witnessed the incident, and pulled over to help.
As they were working to move the trailer, an 81-year-old truck driver from Mississippi swerved to avoid hitting the trailer but collided with the Volkswagen and the trailer. The truck struck both the man and the woman working to move the trailer. The Lafayette man suffered fatal injuries and died on the scene. The Florida woman suffered critical injuries and was admitted at a local hospital.
What can we learn from this accident?
The risk factors for this crash began long before the tractor trailer came along. An improperly secured load — in this case the trailer — and people standing on the interstate are both major contributors to this deadly incident. The fact that it occurred a little after 1 a.m. is also a factor, because it can be incredibly difficult to see road debris or unexpected pedestrians in the dark.
Losing a trailer or cargo from your vehicle on the interstate creates a very serious situation. Not only may there be major damage to vehicles that run into it, this type of collision — or swerving to avoid it — can lead to severe injuries or even death. Unfortunately, in this case, a concerned motorist who stopped to help lost his life. To prevent similar incidents:
- Learn how to properly secure cargo and tow trailers, as explained in this guide from Purdue University.
- Follow all Louisiana laws about towing.
- Call police about any lost loads; never attempt to recover lost cargo on your own.
- Never walk on or along the interstate.
- Always carry road flares, cones, or other similar items with you in your car’s emergency kit. Turn on your hazards any time you must stop and stay stopped.
How can the Law Offices of Matt & Allen help after a Lafayette road debris accident?
At the Law Offices of Matt & Allen, our attorneys have seen a wide variety of car accident cases, and negotiated settlements in many of them. If you struck lost cargo on a Louisiana interstate or highway, or if you were injured due to another driver swerving to avoid this type of debris, we can help you identify the liable party or parties and get the compensation you need.
Call our Lafayette office today at 337-237-1000 to schedule your free consultation.