It’s not uncommon to see debris on the road and its shoulders. Some of it, such as chunks of tire tread, often come from commercial trucks. However, the driving public contribute to the problem when they carry cargo on top of their vehicles or in trailers. If these items were properly secured, road debris wouldn’t be as big a problem that it currently is. Mattresses held on the tops of cars by a few bungee cords, overloaded pickup trucks with open tailgates, or trailers filled with loose items are examples of people unwilling to take the time to properly secure their cargo.
Poor car maintenance also contributes to the road debris problem. Rusted out exhaust systems fill the roads with mufflers and sections of tail pipes. Spare tires improperly attached to jeeps can fall onto the road and endanger the driving public. Sometimes trailers break loose from the vehicles hauling them because of improper attachment or the lack of chain backups. There are many ways that debris falls on the road, but the overriding cause for most of these incidents comes down to one thing: negligence.
How Road Debris Causes Accidents
The act of running over road debris can cause a loss of control of the vehicle. This is especially true of motorcycles, which lack the stability of four-wheeled vehicles. Cars driven at higher speeds are less stable, and hitting a large object at 65 mph can make a car spin out of control. A sufficiently large object on the road can blowout a tire, which then causes a crash.
Spare tires bouncing on the road have crashed through windshields and disabled drivers. However, the most common and deadly way that road debris causes accidents is when it induces motorists to swerve and hit oncoming traffic or go off the road.
How to Avoid Becoming a Victim
Simply allowing plenty of following distance is a good strategy for avoiding many types of accidents. In addition, you should exercise extra caution when any vehicle in front of you is carrying cargo or objects on their roof, in a pickup truck bed, or in a trailer. These vehicles are easy to spot. Be especially cautious when the loads appear poorly secured.
As mentioned previously, dangerous road debris usually comes about because of negligence. If road debris caused a crash that injured you or a family member, contact us.