Safety & Compliance

Birmingham Officials Tired Of Loose Coils

December 30, 1999

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Officials in Birmingham, AL, are tired of repairing downtown interstates from steel coils that have fallen off the backs of flatbeds.

According to a report in the Birmingham News, steel coils have fallen onto interstate bridges in downtown Birmingham 14 times since 1988. There have been no fatalities, but it often takes weeks to make repairs, snarling traffic.
The cost of the repairs are paid by the truck insurance companies, with repair costs ranging from $12,000 to $143,000. The most expensive happened in 1998, when a coil hit Interstate 65 and bounced across the traffic lanes, creating 22 holes.
Most of the accidents have happened because the loads have not been secured properly, according to Birmingham police.
Gene Vonderau, safety director for the Alabama Trucking Assn., agrees that truck drivers are not using the right number of chains, or are not checking the securement devices to make sure they're secure.

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