“Road debris” – Little publicity, serious danger

Here are some statistics every driver these days needs to know. The death toll from road debris is rising nationwide. According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), road debris was responsible for 200,000 crashes and 500 deaths nationwide from 2011to 2014.

What is road debris?

It’s the piece of furniture that flies off the back of a pickup truck moving a family from one home to another. It’s a piece of an old car that breaks off at interstate speeds, bouncing across the road toward you. It’s the long strip of a truck tire that peeled off an 18-wheeler, lying in wait like a “car eating road gator” that you don’t see until the last minute. It’s the trailer that comes unhitched in front of you at 70 miles an hour on an interstate.

The high winds generated by traffic on interstates can easily dislodge loads on the back of a pickup or tied to the top of a car, immediately turning them into road debris, if they are not properly secured. They can force you to swerve at the last minute. American Automobile Association (AAA) statistics show that “…nearly 37% of all deaths in road debris crashes” are caused by drivers swerving to avoid objects they have just seen on the road.

Road debris injuries are serious

They easily cause major wrecks. When a ladder fell off a truck in Central Texas, it caused a sudden, high-speed, four car accident. If an object weighing 20 pounds flies out of the back of a pickup truck that’s going 55 miles per hour, it will hit another car like a 1,000 pound projectile. CNN covered the stories of a 24-year old woman who was almost decapitated when road debris hit her windshield and slammed into her face and a 29-year old man who died instantly when scrap metal smashed his windshield and pierced his heart.

Personal Injury Attorney Wyatt Wright has this advice to protect you

Don’t follow other cars so closely you can’t see down the road. You have no way of knowing if a box or a mattress, or a chair or a piece of furniture is lying in the middle of the lane ahead of you a short distance away. When the cars in front of you swerve to avoid it, you could be in a dangerous wreck. Don’t tailgate vehicles pulling trailers. They can come unhitched. Stay away from cars with loads on top or pickups carrying household goods or other personal items.

If you do become the victim of a road debris accident, St. Louis personal injury lawyer Wyatt Wright is ready to help. For 40 years he’s been successfully representing those who have been injured by others’ negligence. Wyatt Wright is one of America’s top trial lawyers. His national legal awards are based on top winnings for clients. There are no fees until your case is settled for what you deserve. Calls and evaluations are free.

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