Hazmat trucks and tankers haul gas or liquid cargo as well as flammable or explosive solids. Accidents involving any type of commercial truck are dangerous, but an accident involving a hazmat truck can be especially catastrophic. Hazmat truck drivers and carriers are supposed to follow stringent federal rules and regulations, but life-altering accidents still occur. In a hazmat emergency, the spilling of toxic material can be harmful to not only the drivers and passengers of the accident, but also to nearby residents. There could be long-term and even deadly repercussions for the victims of the accident.
In the event of a hazmat trucking accident, there are multiple parties and insurance companies involved. It is important to contact a personal injury lawyer immediately after the accident, so that the lawyer can gather and preserve evidence before the evidence is destroyed or lost.
Justice and Restitution After a Hazmat Truck Crash
Collisions involving trucks carrying hazardous materials often lead to severe injuries including burns, respiratory illnesses, eye injuries resulting in vision loss, brain and spine injuries, and more. These injuries require significant medical intervention and consequently place a massive financial burden on the victim and the victim’s family. Combined with lost income from missed work, vehicle repair and replacement costs, and other accident-related expenses, many hazmat truck accident victims find themselves overwhelmed by debt and unsure of what to do next.
If you were injured in a truck crash involving hazardous materials, you may be able to seek financial compensation for your losses through a personal injury claim. If your loved one died in a crash involving a hazmat vehicle, you may be able to bring a wrongful death claim and fight for compensation on your loved one’s behalf. An experienced attorney can find and preserve evidence, negotiate with the insurance company and at-fault parties, file a claim, and advocate on your behalf throughout the process.
Understanding Liability for an Accident Involving Hazardous Cargo
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) classifies nine hazardous cargos, which are listed on a placard affixed to all four sides of the truck or tanker. Trucks that carry explosives, toxic materials, flammable liquids and solids, radioactive materials, and other dangerous substances are required to comply with multiple regulations designed to prevent cargo spills and accidents. A truck driver or trucking company that violates these rules and regulations may be liable for the damages caused in a crash.
The at-fault party may also be the party that designed or manufactured a defective truck component, faulty cargo containment mechanism, or substandard cargo securement device. Sometimes, multiple parties’ negligent actions contribute to a serious truck crash. This is why it is important to contact a lawyer soon after the accident so an investigation can be quickly initiated.
The statute of limitations for truck accidents in Wisconsin is typically three years from when the accident occurred.
Contact our Appleton Personal Injury Lawyers
Hazmat trucking accidents can be catastrophic and life-changing. At Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd., we aggressively advocate on behalf of injured truck accident victims and seek maximum financial compensation for damages. Contact our Green Bay trucking accident lawyers for a free consultation at 920-468-7366.