Who can stop trucks carrying unsafe loads?

| 15/07/2019
Ask Auntie, CNS Local Life, Caymanian status

A few weeks ago I was driving south on the Esterley Tibbetts Highway behind one of the commercial garbage contractor’s trucks. The dumpster onboard was full but uncovered and as I watched a large piece of packing foam flew off and bounced off the windshield of a following vehicle. Fortunately, that driver remained focused and didn’t in turn veer into the cars driving alongside. Again last week I saw another truck similarly laden which had a number of items looking like they might fly off at any time. It had a load cover onboard but it was neatly folded at the front.

Who is supposed to be ‘policing’ this?

Someone is going to get hurt by flying garbage if they don’t start enforcing whatever laws require loads to be covered. Should be easy to enforce – just have a ghost car on Tibbetts or on Seymour Drive and ticket offenders as they go by.

Auntie’s answer: I’d like to say I have never seen anything like you describe but we both know that would be untrue. This is something that definitely needs to be addressed

A few months ago I dealt with a question on people sitting in the backs of trucks which touched on improper loading but didn’t address those legal implications. Your question is also timely as in May the RCIPS began efforts to increase enforcement of such violations through the Traffic and Roads Policing Unit. And that is the short answer to your question: the police are responsible to ensure trucks are not driving around with loads that are not properly secured.

The Traffic Regulations (2017 Revision) specifically addresses unsafe loading, which says in Section 17(4), “The load carried by any vehicle or trailer shall at all times be so secured and restrained to prevent movement of the load in transit and be in such a position, that neither danger nor nuisance is caused or likely to be caused to any person or property by reason of the load or any part of it falling or being blown from the vehicle or by reason of any movement of the load or any part of it in relation to the vehicle.”

I’d say that section sums up your concerns very nicely. Further, if a person contravenes this section such as by using or allowing to be used a vehicle or trailer whose load is not properly secured, this is an offence, which on summary conviction is liable to a fine of $400, imprisonment for six months, or both.

As with other traffic violations, I always note that the police cannot be everywhere at once so may not catch the truck that you see carrying a load that seems ready to wind up on the road or, as you say, fly off the back of the vehicle.

But the RCIPS is focusing on catching these dangerous drivers, so let’s see what happens.

The law mentioned above can be found on the CNS Library

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Category: Ask Auntie, Traffic Questions

Comments (8)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Not only Trucks with unsafe loads but those huge trucks which ‘Fly’ along at breakneck speeds – I saw 2 in close proximity today absolutely flooring it on Spotts road heading towards Town – I was nervous driving on the other side of the road in case they skidded or toppled over (especially considering the Road works which were going on). I just wish my dashcam had been working !

  2. Anonymous says:

    There’s gravel, rock, and cement encrusting all our roads and intersections as a direct result of unsecured loads. It’s not a hypothetical.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I’ve followed unlicensed landscaping trailers that had softball-sized rocks bouncing off the back into oncoming traffic at 100mph of closure…they drove by two cop cars that didn’t see or do anything, and a truck loaded with natural gas/liquid propane tanks.

  4. Anonymous says:

    The condition of commercial vehicles is a joke. So many that have clearly been imported cheap because they simply couldn’t be used in the USA any more.
    Surely we can do better than American cast-offs that were obsolete 20 years ago?

    As for the way they’re loaded: laughably dangerous.

    For a country with so many police officers, we really do allow so much potential (and actual) carnage on our roads.

  5. Anonymous says:

    In 5 minutes today I passed three bicycles on the wrong side of the road, two children in the back of a pickup, and construction workers in the back of a construction vehicle. The icing was when I saw a police car, only for it to do nothing except turn off the road it was on without indicating.

    • Anonymous says:

      How about children in cars without safety belt on, or even dogs loose in car cabins

    • Anonymous says:

      I saw a similar thing with a Police car the other day – Changed lanes with no indication – as do 90% of traffic – those that do, tend to brake first, make their move then put their turn signal on as an afterthought when the move is already completed.
      I’ve had many a near front-end collision through this sort of behaviour – drivers pulling in front with inches to spare and no warning. Police should know better !
      As for bicycles on the wrong side of the road – apparently they pretty much have free range (see article from a few days ago).

  6. Anonymous says:

    I see this issue often as well! But even more dangerous is seeing wobbly wheels on theses trucks that have actually COME OFF on 2 occasions witnessed by 2 different friends.