Every truck that shares the road with passenger vehicles has the potential to cause tremendous physical harm. Trucks generally weigh at least 10,000 pounds and can weigh several times more than that. They can be as long as 75 feet, and the sheer volume makes them extremely difficult to stop, and deadly to be in a collision with. If you are in a collision, you should consider hiring a Truck Accident Attorney to help you with your case.
Making the risk of a deadly accident even greater, many of the commercial trucks that are on the road are carrying hazardous materials. If a truck driver who is transporting these materials is not properly trained in how to handle them, or is in an accident in which they spill, grave injuries can befall those who are in the vicinity.
Special HAZMAT Rules
The Federal Department of Transportation has established a number of rules regarding the way that hazardous materials are transported. Special paperwork is required of those vehicles carrying hazardous materials; special licensing fees need to be paid, and all rules are specifically designed to ensure the safety of the public.
When a truck driver or the owner of a company transporting hazardous materials does not adhere to these laws they endanger countless lives. When an accident occurs the injuries may go beyond those caused by the vehicle itself, and can be caused or exacerbated by the nature of the material that the truck was carrying.
Shippers are also required to alert the trucking company of the nature of the cargo being shipped. When a shipper fails to disclose the dangerous nature of the materials they are carrying, they risk catastrophe and can be held liable for any injuries that may result from their negligence or irresponsible behavior.
Fault in Hazardous Materials Accidents
Those who have been injured in a truck accident with a vehicle transporting hazardous materials may have the right to pursue many different parties for ay injuries that they sustain. Those who can be held liable include the truck driver and the owner of the trucking company, as well as the entity that shipped the materials.
Hazardous Materials Injuries
Being involved in an accident with a truck carrying hazardous materials can result in serious injuries if you end up being exposed to the truck’s cargo. Frequently the materials are flammable or toxic if inhaled. In many cases injuries are sustained where none would have been had the cargo been less dangerous.