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Auto Accident Lawyers in Charles County, MD: Can I Sue if a Lost Mattress Caused My Accident?

Yes. If an accident is caused by some sort of lost cargo, the driver who lost the cargo is almost always at fault and can be sued for damages. Lost cargo can include things like a mattress coming loose from the top of a car. We have all probably seen people trying to get a mattress home by tying it with string to the top of their sedan. We maybe even smile a bit at early experiences we may have had doing the same thing. But, in truth, we all know that driving with loose cargo is dangerous and, hopefully, everyone is extra cautious when encountering such vehicles. Other examples include Christmas trees falling off of and out of cars, objects bouncing out of the beds of pickup trucks, rock, sand, dirt, and gravel falling from earth-moving trucks, and major lost cargo from big rig trucks and 18-wheelers.

The reason that the vehicle losing the cargo is almost always at fault is because, in Maryland, “fault” is based on the legal concepts of negligence. That is, the at fault driver must be proven negligent for victims to recover compensation. To prove negligence, four legal elements must be shown, including duty, breach of duty, causation, and injury.

With lost cargo, generally, the duty and breach are obvious. To begin, each driver has a duty to drive carefully, to obey traffic rules and regulations, and to have vehicles (and contents) that are in good repair and maintenance. All three duties require that any driver with cargo must secure the cargo properly. Securing cargo is part of driving carefully, is required by traffic laws and regulations, and is required to keep a vehicle safe on the roads.

Then, if it is shown that the lost cargo was at least one cause of the accident and that injuries resulted from the accident, negligence has been proven. Potential compensation that can be recovered by victims includes:

  • Medical expenses and costs — these include standard items like hospital bills and more specific medical expenses — where required — like physical and rehabilitative therapies
  • Lost wages — this might include both future wages and lost income
  • Property damage — to the victim’s vehicle, contents of the vehicle, and other things
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of normal life
  • Disfigurement
  • Wrongful death

Victims must act quickly since there is a three-year deadline from the date of the accident for filing a personal injury lawsuit in Maryland. The process usually starts with filing an insurance claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Generally, you must also notify your own car insurance company just in case the at-fault driver has no insurance or does not have enough insurance. It is important to hire experienced Maryland car accident attorneys to help with this process. It can be complicated and daunting to try and negotiate with insurance company representatives. Plus, without an attorney by your side, you never know if you are “leaving money on the table.”

Contact Waldorf, MD Personal Injury Attorney Robert Castro Today

This article has been provided by the Law Office of Robert Castro. For more information or questions, contact our office to speak to an experienced Maryland personal injury lawyer at (301) 870-1200. We are Waldorf, MD, Personal Injury lawyers. Our address is 2670 Crain Highway, Waldorf, MD 20601.