Drivers of open trailers have little protection against shipper loading.
by, 05.09.2012 at 12.04 PM (925 Views)
When is a driver not responsible for a load that is loaded on their trailer? Never, even if it is blatantly the shipper screw up. As and open trailer driver the more you do to make sure the load is secure, at a legal height and safe for the road, the less responsible the shipper is.
I hear ya, you are wondering where I am going with this. Okay lets say you go to a shipper that has a load of machinery they are going to load on you, the weight of the load is only about 36000 lbs, so weight is not a issue, you make them do some adjusting to get it down to height, so now that is good, you secure everything by the book wit extra, so you feel good about that.So now I really have you wondering what this clown is talking about.
So any way all is good, you have stopped to check and tighten securement along the way as required by DOT. Nothing could be better easy money your thinking, wait not so quick! You arrive at your destination, and you are asked to go ahead and remove your secuerment,and you say no problem,all is well, load looks good, next load is all ready been set up, music to an O/P ears. So anyway you start the secement,as you loosen one of the straps and turn around to go to the other side of the truck, a 1000 lb piece falls on your head and breaks your back and your career. come to find out the piece was top heavy and should never of been loaded the way it was, and there was no way for the driver to know it was top heavy, being the shipper loaded the way he did, he was able to put another piece of freight on. whose fault is it? Well you know that it automatically is the driver and that there is nothing that one can do the the shipper, you accepted the load you proved by checking the load over that you were with an under standing of making sure everything was loaded properly, and lets not forget the open and obvious defense, even though that it was not an open and obvious. As a driver you are responsible no matter what when you sign for the load and leave the shippers yard, no mater how blatant the shipper may have been.
So does anybody out see a problem out there with this? To me it is real easy to put the blame off on the driver for all of the industry problems,no matter what.
Does anybody else see a problem with this?
So drivers remember you do not have a lot of law on your side, you will be and always have been the first to blame.
Stay safe and watch your back, if we as drivers will not do it for each other nor will any body else.