Truck Accidents and Cargo Spills: A Fatal Recipe

Truck Accidents and Cargo Spills: A Fatal RecipeThere is no doubt that a regular truck accident can be extremely dangerous, but what happens when you add hazardous materials to that combination?

A truck accident involving a cargo spill can easily become even more disastrous to you and anyone around you. Aside from their already massive strength and size of 80,000 pounds, it only becomes more difficult for commercial trucks to safely navigate on the road when they’re loaded.

Why cargo truck accidents are more dangerous than regular truck accidents

Many different types of trucks can be involved in cargo spill accidents, including box trucks, semi-tractor trailers, dump trucks, garbage trucks, tanker trucks, and more. While a regular truck accident can certainly be very serious and even fatal, cargo spill truck accidents become that much more complicated. Depending on what they are carrying, these spills could be damaging to the vehicles involved in the accident as well as vehicles on the same roadway. More vehicular damage can be caused, as there are now other items aside from just the truck that can potentially become dangerous debris. Do not hesitate to reach out to our team of experienced truck accident attorneys if you’ve been injured in a cargo spill.

Types of cargo spill accidents

Just a few weeks ago in Maryland, a truck carrying approximately 4,000 gallons of fuel oil overturned on the Beltway. The accident occurred in the afternoon when many people were on the road and could have been seriously hurt. Two people were injured, but the accident could have been much worse. Since fuel was involved, any spark could have easily caused a massive, rapidly growing fire. The accident could have resulted in additional property damage and personal injuries, even fatal ones.

Aside from fuel spills, many other types of cargo spills can put people at risk. Heavy equipment cargo damage can be very severe. Imagine a truck carrying a mobile home or crane parts overturning, or the straps coming loose. The destruction it would leave behind could be massive. Non-hazardous material spills, such as with tires, vehicles, pallets, and other items can also be very dangerous, and have the potential to cause more injuries and property damage.

Toxic spills are probably the most complicated type. When hazardous chemicals are involved, the general public is almost always at risk. A HAZMAT team will need to be called in to immediately mitigate the risk to the public. These types of cargo spill accidents can involve lethal gasses, combustible products, and deadly corrosives that can eat through metals. Anyone who is near this type of situation is at risk to sustain life-threatening respiratory issues and burns to the skin or eyes.

Cargo loading errors caused by negligence

Human error is almost always the one to blame for cargo spills. There are various ways in which truck drivers can be neglectful when loading or driving a truck that is loaded. To prevent these types of accidents resulting from human error, the individuals loading the cargo must be vigilant and utilize common sense. If the weight is not evenly distributed, the truck is more susceptible to an accident on the road. If the truck driver is speeding while transporting cargo, the loads can shift more easily and drastically because of the momentum if they get into an accident.

If a truck driver is careless and turns too quickly or takes a ramp too fast, the entire rig can overturn. A truck driver may be distracted, whether by their cell phones or their surroundings. Because of this, they might not brake as soon as they need to, and they can easily put many people in danger. Truck drivers are also known for being fatigued and overworked. They rush to get to their destinations on time, so they may not take their federally mandated breaks. A drowsy driver is a dangerous one in all circumstances. All of these forms of negligence can lead to serious injuries and fatalities.

Truck accidents are already dangerous enough, but when cargo spills are involved, the risk of injury is increased. If you’ve been injured by a cargo spill, it can feel very overwhelming. Do not take on this task of fighting alone. While you focus on healing, we’ll take care of the rest. Get in contact with one of our experienced truck accident attorneys today. At Plaxen Adler Muncy, P.A., we operate multiple offices throughout Maryland and are ready to help you. Call our office today, or submit our contact form to schedule a free consultation.