Who is Responsible if an Item falls from a car in front of me?

By Patrick N. George

We’ve all seen this before the situation before where items are tied precariously to the top of a car or hanging over the edge of a truck. If it falls out, who is at fault?

Before we go further, we hope that nothing goes wrong in such a scenario. Of course, we know that the best case scenario is not always going to happen. Sometimes an item is going to fall from the car. Occasionally an item is going to fall out of the truck. In each of these two situations,

This is because every person has a responsibility to use ordinary care for themselves and others around them. In other words, the person who is placing the item on their vehicle or in their truck has a duty to secure their loads in a reasonable fashion so that they won’t come undone and cause injury or damage to personal property.

So what do you do should something fall off of a vehicle and strike your car. Well, first of all, make sure you and your passengers are okay. Next, report the accident. There are times that the driver will not realize that anything has happened will continue to drive down the road. If this happens, you need to place a claim with your own insurance. This falls under a special category of insurance called uninsured or underinsured motorist.

Make sure you have uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance coverage. It is optional coverage and often overlooked by buyers, but in situations, it can be very important. The coverage is usually quite inexpensive, but will compensate you in the case of a hit and run driver or a situation as described above.

Finally, don’t wait to file a claim with your insurance company. Double check your policy and see how long you have to report the incident to the police and your insurance company. This sometimes varies between companies and the time periods can be relatively short.

There is another reason that this type of coverage is important. If the driver does see the accident and returns to the scene, but the damage is significant and exceeds the amount of his coverage, your uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage can bridge the gap. It cannot be stressed enough how important this type of insurance is and how it can help return you to your pre-accident status.


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