The New Hampshire State Police recently shut down Route 10 in West Swanzey after a trailer became unhitched from its tractor and caused a three-vehicle pileup. After becoming detached, the trailer veered across the roadway and eventually stopped in the middle, blocking three traffic lanes. A dump truck slammed into the trailer then an SUV crashed into the dump truck, heavily damaging its front end. Both truck drivers were unhurt, but the SUV driver sustained minor injuries and was transported from the scene.
It is a small miracle that no one was gravely injured in this incident. A runaway trailer is as dangerous as a massive tree falling across a roadway. Not only might this 80,000-pound object slam into other moving vehicles, but upon seeing it, drivers might panic or react erratically as they try to avoid it, which can cause a pileup. Even smaller boats, campers, and rented moving trailers can cause devastating, life-changing injuries or death once unhitched.
If you have been injured in a trailer detachment in New Hampshire, whether in Concord, Bedford, or Goffstown, you must promptly speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer. A knowledgeable lawyer can help determine how the accident occurred, who is responsible for your injuries, and help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Contact the New Hampshire car and truck accident lawyers of Tenn And Tenn, P.A. at 888-332-5855 or contact us online today for a free consultation.
What causes unhitched trailer accidents?
Trailers and towed vehicles can become unhitched for various reasons, but it occurs most frequently when the trailer has not been hitched correctly. Inexperienced or poorly trained drivers may only realize they’ve connected the trailer improperly too late. A tired, pressured, or distracted commercial driver may forget to ensure that all the components are securely attached before driving off. If not properly secured, a bump in the road, a steep incline, or even just going at high speed could cause the trailer ball and hitch to become uncoupled and the trailer to become an unstoppable runaway.
In addition to improper hitching, a trailer or tow could become detached due to the following:
• a manufacturing or design defect in the trailer or trailer hitch components
• failure to use or improper use of safety chains
• rusted hitching equipment
• overweight cargo
• hazardous or poor road conditions
• defective or malfunctioning brakes
• reckless driving behavior, including excessive speed
Note: National Trailer Safety Week is June 4-10.
Who might be at fault in unhitched trailer accidents?
It’s easy to conclude that the driver of the towing vehicle is responsible for causing an unhitched trailer accident and is, therefore, liable for your injuries. But it’s not always so simple. To determine the full scope of liability, you must also investigate the potential responsibility of all people or companies involved, including:
• The vehicle driver. The driver of the towing vehicle is the obvious first step in an unhitched trailer investigation. One must assess whether they hitched the trailer correctly, their driving speed at the time it came unhitched, the condition of the road,
• The hitch manufacturer. If a hitch is improperly manufactured or defectively designed, and your attorney can show the hitch failed due to these flaws, the manufacturer may be liable for the accident.
• The cargo loaders. If a commercial truck is involved in the accident, the persons who loaded the cargo might be liable if your lawyer can prove these professionals loaded the truck beyond its maximum capacity causing the hitch to become detached.
• The State or local road maintenance crews– Sometimes, a poorly-designed road or improperly maintained street can create hazardous conditions that can cause a trailer to become unhitched. State-involved cases are always challenging, but under the right circumstances, an experienced attorney may be able to prove that the state or the company responsible for maintaining the road is liable for the unhitched trailer and your injuries.
How can New Hampshire attorneys Tenn And Tenn, P.A. help in an unhitched trailer accident case?
In New Hampshire, you can successfully obtain damages for losses suffered in a car or truck accident only if you can prove that someone else was at fault. Proving fault can be extremely complicated. A knowledgeable lawyer will know the right questions to ask and persons to speak with to determine fault. They’ll also know how to track down witnesses, find relevant video footage, and where to obtain experts on hitching and towing who can identify what went wrong, who was at fault, and explain why.
The personal injury lawyers of Tenn And Tenn, P.A. stand ready to vigorously investigate who was at fault in the accident and prove that the parties responsible are liable for compensating you for medical expenses, property damage, and other economic losses arising from the accident. Contact Tenn And Tenn, P.A. today at888-332-5855 or online for your free evaluation. Our attorneys have helped numerous clients find the results they hoped for throughout New Hampshire, including Manchester, Portsmouth, Hampton, and Londonderry. We are ready to help you too.