What Are Tanker Trucks?
Large and speeding trucks are dangerous enough on the highways, but when the large tanker trucks are hauling dangerous cargo such as gasoline and other hazardous substances, they are incredibly dangerous.
Tanker trucks are big commercial trucks designed to transport liquid cargo. We see them frequently rolling down our highways and pulling into gas stations, those big trucks with the cylinder-shaped storage tank in back, sometimes with required hazmat (hazardous materials) warnings posted on the sides and back of the tank. Some tankers are used to transport non-hazardous liquids like milk, but many tankers transport hazardous fluids like gas and liquid chemicals.
Are Tankers More Dangerous Than Other Commercial Trucks?
Yes, they are! Tankers are the only commercial trucks to be regulated by the United States Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) no matter their size and weight. Other trucks fall under FMCSA jurisdiction if they weigh 10,000 pounds or more. A tanker truck is more prone to rollover and jackknife accidents than other commercial trucks because its cargo is unstable. If the liquid in the tank sloshes around, it can destabilize the truck and cause it to go out of control and rollover or jackknife.
Tankers are most often used to transport toxic or explosive liquid chemicals, making them hazardous in the extreme. If the truck spills its cargo in an accident a gas explosion or chemical spill may result. This requires a cleanup crew to be dispatched and usually, the surrounding area has to be evacuated. These toxic chemical and gas spills can cause greater injuries to you and damage to the environment which may take years to repair.
A tanker truck explosion is a frightening occurrence which endangers everybody. In one recent tanker explosion, the local environmental authorities chose to allow the spillage to burn off, rather than putting it out and allowing it to seep into a nearby water supply.
How Can a Tanker Truck Accident Occur?
A tanker truck driver must be especially alert and careful with their dangerous cargo. If a driver is fatigued, in a hurry and driving at an unsafe speed or impaired by a mind-altering substance, even a legal or over the counter medication, the driver could make a mistake leading to a deadly crash. Moreover, because tankers can’t stop fast the driver must stay alert for other motorists who might do something dangerous, and be able to react in time to stop a potential accident.
The company that owns the tanker could be responsible for the accident if they:
- Overload the truck;
- Fail to do regular safety inspections;
- Fail to keep the truck in good repair;
- Do not sufficiently train drivers; or
- Pressure drivers to meet unrealistic delivery deadlines which can lead to speeding and/or driver fatigue.
Injuries Resulting From a Tanker Truck Crash
On top of the serious injuries caused by a collision with a gigantic, heavy truck, include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Internal organ damage
- Disfiguring lacerations
- Back injuries
- Broken bones
In addition to these physical injuries and death that can be caused by the collision, there are additional dangers and risks of injury that can be caused by a Tanker truck accident, such as:
- Burns from fire
- Smoke inhalation
- Chemical burns
If you are in the area of a tanker accident you could be exposed to chemical inhalation, radiation, or water supply contamination. These can happen even when you were not in the collision but were traveling near the scene of the toxic spill.
Many of the injuries listed above are permanently disabling and/or require years of medical treatment with multiple surgeries and physical therapy. If you are fortunate enough to survive a collision with a tanker, you will likely be facing years of pain and struggle, with lost wages, perhaps lost future income, and a need for medical care and special physical therapy equipment. You may never be able to recover your former earning capacity and manner of life.
You Need a Lawyer to Receive Just Compensation
The tanker company’s insurance may not cover the cost of your medical bills, lost wages and earning capacity, and pain and suffering. In order to get a fair settlement or judgment, you should hire an experienced trucking accident lawyer who knows how to investigate these complex cases, and collect a fair settlement or judgment amount for all your injuries and losses.
Regardless of the level of insurance coverage, insurance companies are known for trying to deny claims entirely. They send skilled investigators out to accident scenes and their job is to gather evidence that places the blame for the accident elsewhere than on the trucking company.
Call Isaacs & Isaacs Trucking Accident Lawyers
Isaacs & Isaacs truck accident attorneys have a 99% success rate in recovering a fair settlement or judgment for our clients who live in Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana. We will investigate your accident thoroughly and we will do everything we have to do to get the facts, including filing a lawsuit to demand trucking company records.
In the end, we won’t rest until we get you every single penny you have coming to you as the victim of a tanker truck accident. We understand how devastating it can be to suffer serious injuries or lose a loved one as a result of a collision with a tanker truck. We are committed to handling the legal process for you in the best possible way so that you can focus on healing and go forward with your life. Let us take the burden off your shoulders.
We understand that these tragic accidents happen at all hours of the day and night and we are on call twenty-four hours, seven days a week to be there when you need us most. Call us anytime at 800-800-888 or fill out our online form for a free consultation with one of our skilled trucking accident attorneys.