You may not have ever considered it, but did you know that unsecured cargo can be dangerous in the event of a crash? Not only can it be distracting to have items, or even pets, moving around in your vehicle while you drive, but they could turn into projectiles in a collision.
According to Safety Research and Strategies, Inc., a group dedicated to vehicle and product safety, loose objects in vehicles are responsible for approximately 13,000 injuries annually. During a collision, objects fly forward at enormous speed. An ordinary object like a briefcase or even a can from a bag of groceries has the potential to cause serious injury. For example, during a collision at 55 mph, a 20-pound bag can strike with 1,000 pounds of force.
What can you do in this situation to prevent injury? Keep in mind the following guidelines:
- Stow loose items in your trunk or cargo area.
- If your vehicle is equipped with cargo nets, tethers, or anchors, use them to help secure your belongings.
- Secure other small items, like phones or glasses, in your glove compartment.
- Leave objects that you do not need for your trip at home.
- Pack heavier, larger items on the bottom and lighter items on top. Center these items in the vehicle and rest them next to fixed components in your vehicle.
- Be sure to fasten your seatbelt. Unrestrained people can be just as much of a problem as unsecured cargo.
Unsecured cargo can lead to other dangers as well. Loose objects located within the driver’s foot space may lodge themselves beneath the brake pedal, causing a dangerous scenario in which the driver cannot stop the vehicle. That is why it is important to keep your vehicle organized and free of debris.
Remember that even the smallest item can turn into a lethal projectile in an accident. Resist the temptation to throw items in the seat next to you simply because it is convenient. By taking these precautionary measures, you can greatly reduce your risk and make your drive a safer one.
Have you been injured in a car or truck accident? Don’t wait to contact the Las Vegas car accident attorneys from Shook & Stone. We have offered top-quality service to injured clients since 1997, and we may be able to help you to obtain compensation for your injuries. For a free case review to discuss what may be possible in your case, please call our office today at (888) 662-2013.