Runaway Trailer in Anderson Injures Woman

Home » Runaway Trailer in Anderson Injures Woman
April 20, 2024
Edward Smith

Elderly Woman Injured Near Deschutes Road by Runaway Trailer 

A runaway trailer in Anderson crashed into a home, injuring an elderly woman on April 18. The accident happened around 4:00 p.m. near Deschutes Road, according to the Redding California Highway Patrol (CHP). Officials said that a flatbed trailer became disconnected, traveled off the road, and crashed into the home. 

Woman Hospitalized With Major Injuries Caused by Runaway Trailer

A woman in her 70s was inside the house and struck by the trailer and resulting debris. She suffered major trauma and was taken for treatment to Mercy Medical Center, where she was hospitalized. The CHP traffic collision unit is investigating to determine why the trailer became unattached.

Why Do Flatbed Trailers Disengage?

A few reasons trailers disengage are:

  • Improper coupling: Flatbed trailers can become disengaged from trucks for a number of reasons, leading to potentially dangerous situations on the road. One common cause of a runaway trailer is improper coupling between the trailer and the truck. This can occur if the locking mechanism on the fifth wheel doesn’t properly engage the kingpin of the trailer. Such failures might stem from human error, mechanical failure, or a combination of both. Regular maintenance and checks can help mitigate this risk, but they are not foolproof. 
  • Equipment failure: Another factor contributing to disengagement incidents is equipment failure. Over time, the components of the coupling mechanism can suffer wear and tear or become damaged, leading to a higher risk of failure. Corrosion, fatigue, and physical damage from previous loads can weaken the connection between truck and trailer. It’s essential for trucking companies to adhere to strict maintenance schedules and conduct thorough inspections before each use to identify and address potential issues.
  • Adverse road conditions/improper loading: Adverse road conditions and improper loading can also lead to a runaway trailer. Sudden maneuvers, heavy or unevenly distributed loads, and driving on rough terrain can exert unexpected forces on the coupling mechanism, increasing the likelihood of disengagement. Proper training on loading techniques and awareness of road conditions are vital for preventing these incidents.

Liability for Trailer Disengagement

If a disengaged trailer causes major injuries to an individual, the liability of the trucking company would come into question. Companies are typically held to a high standard of care, given the potential for serious harm that commercial vehicles can cause. Liability may be established on several grounds, including negligence in failing to properly maintain and inspect the vehicle, or in ensuring the secure coupling of the trailer. If it is proven that the disengagement resulted from a failure to adhere to industry safety standards or from ignoring known issues, the trucking company could be considered directly liable for the resultant injuries and damages. 

Furthermore, claims may also involve violations of specific state or federal transportation regulations, which can strengthen the case against the trucking company. Given these complexities, legal representation with expertise in trucking accidents and personal injury law is essential for affected parties to navigate the legal process and seek appropriate compensation.

Below are several pieces of advice from Ed Smith at regarding selecting an attorney:


Anderson Personal Injury Attorney

I am Ed Smith, an Anderson personal injury attorney. If you or a loved one has been injured due to the negligence of another person or entity, our accident lawyers can provide free, friendly legal advice. For a free consultation, call us at (530) 392-9400 or (800) 404-5400. Alternatively, feel free to contact us online.

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Photo attribution: Image by Ely Penner from Pixabay

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