Can I Be Sued for a Car Accident Caused by Transporting a Christmas Tree?

Attorney Grant Travis | Travis Law Firm | Personal Injury Attorney, DUI Defense Attorney, Criminal Defense Attorney | Serving Erie, Crawford, Warren & all of Northwestern PA | Call the Travis Law Firm at 814-277-2222 today!

Are you planning to search for the perfect Christmas tree to bring home this year? What is the perfect Christmas tree for you? Is it tall, short, skinny, full, or perfectly round at the bottom and thinner at the top? After you find the perfect Christmas tree, you must figure out how to get the tree home. If you do not have a truck to haul the tree, you are left with tying the Christmas tree to the top of your vehicle. Unfortunately, transporting a Christmas tree on the top of your vehicle can cause a serious car accident.

A Road Hazard Waiting to Happen

A quick internet search will provide you with many videos showing Christmas trees falling off vehicles. While some of these videos may seem funny, transporting a Christmas tree on top of your vehicle can be very dangerous.  Christmas trees falling off vehicles can cause a serious car accident. In some cases, one tree can cause a multi-vehicle crash that results in traumatic injuries for individuals involved in the car accident.

If you are transporting a Christmas tree that falls off your vehicle, you can be sued for any damages caused by an accident resulting from the tree falling from your vehicle. As the driver, it is your responsibility to ensure that all objects, including Christmas trees, are secure before putting your vehicle in drive. Failing to secure the tree can result in a car accident lawsuit if the tree falls off the vehicle and causes a car accident.

Therefore, do not assume that the people at the Christmas tree lot will secure the tree for you. You should always check to ensure that the tree is secure and will not fall off during transport. Below are several tips for securing Christmas trees to vehicle roofs to avoid a car accident.

Tips for Securing Christmas Trees to Car Roofs

  • Pick up your Christmas tree in clear weather. You do not need the extra driving challenge of wet, icy, or snow roads to deal with when you are bringing your tree home.
  • Measure your roof to determine the maximum height of your tree. A tree hanging off the back or the front of your vehicle can be a driving hazard.
  • A roof rack is the best option for transporting a Christmas tree on the top of a vehicle. If you do not have a roof rack, you should make sure you open the car door to tie the tree to the roof instead of just rolling down the window.
  • You may want to put an old blanket or tarp on your roof to prevent scratches and sap from damaging your vehicle.
  • If the tree is wrapped in netting, you should leave the netting on the tree. The netting makes it easier to secure the tree to the vehicle roof.
  • Place the tree with the stump facing forward to decrease damage to the tree from wind. Use strong rope or twine to secure the tree. The tree should not move very much from side to side after you tie the tree down to the roof.
  • Drive slowly. It is important to reduce your speed when you have a tree strapped to the roof of your vehicle. Fast stops and sharp turns could cause the tree to shift and either fall from the vehicle or cause you to lose control of the vehicle.

Erie Car Accident Attorneys Available When You Need Them

Call The Travis Law Firm at (800) 401-2066 to schedule a free legal consultation with an Erie car accident attorney to discuss your case.