This week, three over-sized loads will be trucked through the middle of
Georgia, arriving at the General Electric Company Roper plant in La Fayette,
Georgia. The trucks will carry machine press parts.
The first load is expected to weigh 586,000 pounds and the second and third
loads are estimated to weigh nearly 375,000 pounds and 752,000 pounds
According to the Georgia Department of Transportation, the first load is
expected to leave Savannah, Georgia at 9 p.m. on Monday. The truck and
escort vehicles will make a stop in Forsyth, Georgia on Tuesday. The journey
will continue that evening. The second and third loads will leave Savannah,
Georgia on Tuesday evening and follow a similar route, a day behind.
WHAT IS AN OVER-SIZED LOAD?
An over-sized load is one that exceeds the normal legal limits established
for the size and weight that may be carried on a truck on a specific road
or highway. Generally, loads that are wider than 8 feet 6 inches are considered
over-sized. Trucks traveling on the Interstate Highway system are subject
to Department of Transportation height and weight limits. In addition,
each State has its own height and length limits for what is considered
over-sized. In order for an over-sized load to be permitted on the road,
the driver must secure a permit authorizing the transport.
DANGERS OF OVER-SIZED LOADS.
Over-sized loads can threaten the safety of other drivers who share roadways
with them. They may also cause more serious damage to property.
One of the reasons that larger truck loads pose more danger is because
drivers of these vehicles have less time to react. The stopping distance
that is required for trucks carrying over-sized loads is much longer.
For every 20,000 pounds of extra cargo that a truck carries over 80,000
pounds, the stopping distance required increases by 25 percent. For instance,
if it takes an 80,000 pound truck 300 feet to come to a complete stop,
it would take a 120,000 pound truck 450 feet to stop. This is equivalent
to one and a half football fields.
In addition, over-sized loads have a lower clearance. Therefore, over-sized
loads which veer off designated routes or miscalculated clearances can
cause serious damage to transportation structures.
Finally, accidents involving over-sized loads are more likely to be fatal.
For example, a tuck weighing 80,000 pounds is twice as likely to result
in a fatality as a truck weighing 65,000 pounds.
TRUCKING ATTORNEYS CAN HELP
If you or a loved one is involved in an accident with a truck carrying
an over-sized load, you should contact an attorney immediately. An attorney
can help you preserve your legal rights. This is because an attorney can
review the facts of your case to determine whether the truck driver, trucking
company, or the truck manufacturer acted negligently to cause your accident.
If this is the case, an attorney can pursue legal action necessary to
ensure that you receive adequate compensation for your injuries and loss.