Unsecured debris falling off trucks and utes is a fairly common occurrence and very dangerous for riders as seen in this video where a Canadian motorcyclist manages to avoid two wooden pallets that fall off a truck.
The BMW F 800 GS rider posted his helmet-cam video on YouTube under the headline “Thank God for the Left Lane Camper” referring to the driver blocking the left lane.
He admits to tailgating the driver but says the car saved him from being hit.
This incident is far from unusual.
Debris a common occurrence
Australian authorities receive tens of thousands of callouts a year to collect debris from our roads.
It includes household goods, building materials and green waste, causing road closures, disruptions, injuries and deaths.
Most vulnerable to these unsecured loads are motorcyclists.
Many riders have witnessed all sorts of things flying off the backs of trucks and pick-ups, but the worst culprits seem to be tradies.
Perhaps they are in a rush to get home or to the next job, but too many don’t secure their loads properly.
Take a look at the side of our freeways. They are littered with tradies’ hard hats, rubber boots, gloves and tools.
Other motorists to avoid are weekend gardeners taking their load to the dump in a hired trailer. They are not professional transport operators, so they don’t know how to secure a load properly. Give them a wide berth.
It’s not as if the police and authorities don’t care about unsecured loads.
Police frequently blitz for unsecured loads and the fines range from several hundred dollars to several thousand, depending on the risk level of the spilt load.
However, a fine won’t help a rider recovering in hospital from hitting a loose load. Instead, it’s our responsibility to stay away from any vehicle with a loose load.
And if you see a dangerous load, report it to the police.
An unusual example of a rider being hit by an unsecured load occurred in Brisbane’s Clem 7 tunnel last year.
Aaron Wood was lucky to avoid injury after hitting a mattress that fell off the back of a ute.
He as riding at 80km/h when he hit the mattress. The impact was so severe he tore the grips off the bars of his Honda CBR1000RR.
The driver was fined a measly $275 for an unsecured load.
The video shows another motorcyclist going past just before the mattress flies off the back of the ute.
Had it come out earlier, it might have taken out two riders.
“I have been riding for 20 years and never had something like this happen,” Aaron told us.
“I had luck on my side.”
In this video an American rider crashes into a load that had fallen off the back of a boat trailer being pulled by an SUV.
Rider Brendan Jankowski, 20, doesn’t seem to be following very closely. However, it is close enough for him not to be able to avoid the load of rolled-up foam that falls off. He hits it square on and flips over.
Luckily, he only received minor injuries.
It’s a good lesson to be aware of trucks and pickups carrying loads secured only by ropes and ties.
What dangerous debris have you seen on our highways? Tell us about your near-miss! Leave your comments below.