Tanker trucks are the only type of commercial truck on the roadways that are always regulated no matter their size or weight by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). In contrast, other commercial trucks must follow specific regulations only if they weigh over 10,000 pounds.
Because liquid in a tanker truck may slosh or spill, causing instability and a greater risk of an accident, tanker trucks are some of the most hazardous types of vehicles on the roadways. If you suffered injuries in an accident in California with a tanker truck, a Los Angeles tanker truck lawyer may be able to help you. Contact the legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 for a free no-obligation consultation. We don’t shy away from the tough cases.
Dangers of Overloaded Tanker Trucks
Tanker trucks transport liquid materials that are often hazardous, toxic, or flammable. If an accident involved a tanker truck, there is a possibility not only of injuries due to the sheer weight and size of the truck, but also due to the fact that the contents it carries may spill on the roadways and cause serious injuries by exploding or catching fire.
When tanker trucks are involved in a collision due to overloaded liquid cargo, rollovers, sideswipe accidents, and jackknife accidents can all occur. Anytime there is an overloading of liquid cargo, there is a greater chance of sloshing or spilling of hazardous materials. In some cases, these accidents are so catastrophic that entire sections of highways completely close, and hazmat cleanup crews must come to eliminate the danger appropriately and safely.
Overloading of tanker trucks may occur due to the following reasons:
- Failure of the trucking company or truck driver to perform quality control and inspections related to the amount of liquid cargo transported
- Failure to conduct proper and regular maintenance on the tanker truck vehicle
- Failure to hire experienced truck drivers, as well as the failure to provide appropriate training to tanker truck drivers who understand the limits of tanker trucks
- Incentivization by the trucking company to drive with overloaded cargo exceeding regulations to meet unrealistic delivery deadlines (this can translate into truck drivers speeding, failing to obey road signs, or driving while fatigued)
Types of Injuries
The cargo carried by tanker trucks is typically toxic and hazardous. In many cases, it is flammable and easily combustible, causing explosions or fires. The following are types of injuries suffered by a victim of a tanker truck accident:
- Respiratory issues (breathing in toxic or flammable materials)
- Severe burns (due to explosions or fires)
- Radioactive illness
- Chemical burns
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Aortic dissections
- Broken bones
- Nerve damage
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal organ damage or internal bleeding
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
If you suffer any of these injuries resulting from a tanker truck accident in Los Angeles, you may be eligible to receive compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. You can call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today for a free no-obligation case evaluation with a member of our team.
For a free legal consultation with a tanker truck accidents lawyer serving Los Angeles, call (800) 794-0444
Accidents involving tanker trucks are typically much more complicated and legally complex than those of passenger vehicle accidents. The toxic and hazardous material that the tanker truck carries can trigger state and federal investigations. Additionally, detailed investigations regarding the cause of the accident often occur from different agencies as well as the insurance company.
Ultimately, a determination of liability will allow a victim of a tanker truck accident to file a claim to receive compensation for any medical bills, lost wages, property damage, or pain and suffering. The following are some entities or persons that may ultimately have liability for a victim’s injuries and losses due to their negligence.
In some cases, the truck driver operated the tanker truck in a negligent manner, such as speeding, failing to obey traffic signals, tailgating, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or driving while fatigued. They could be an independent truck driver, or the trucking company hires them as an independent contractor. In the latter case, a determination needs to occur regarding whether the trucking company’s insurance provider or the truck driver’s individual insurance will be responsible for compensating victims due to the truck driver’s negligence.
If the truck driver is an official employee of the trucking company (either part-time or full-time) and operated the tanker truck as part of their employment in the normal course of business, then in most cases, the liability and responsibility to compensate a victim will rest with the trucking company under the legal theory of respondeat superior, which holds employers accountable for an employee’s wrongful acts.
In some cases, a corporation will have a fleet of tanker trucks to move their cargo throughout the United States. If the tanker truck driver was an employee of the corporation, then that corporation or entity will be liable for any injuries suffered due to their driver’s negligence.
In some cases, the tanker truck accident is not the fault of the truck driver or the trucking company. Instead, a trucking part or component is defective or flawed, which directly led to the tanker truck accident. If this is the case, under product liability law, a victim can directly file a claim against the manufacturer of the defective trucking part or component.
Los Angeles Tanker Truck Accidents Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Consider a Los Angeles Tanker Truck Lawyer
If you suffered injuries related to a tanker truck accident, you likely face substantial medical bills, the inability to return to work resulting in loss of wages, pain and suffering, and property damage. You may feel overwhelmed by negotiations with insurance companies and how to move forward with a legal claim.
Making the legal determination regarding liability in a tanker truck accident can prove challenging and complex. You may want to contact the legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 for a free no-obligation consultation. You can learn more about how a Los Angeles tanker truck lawyer may be able to help secure compensation for your injuries.