When you see a tanker truck on the road, it could be carrying gasoline for sale to the public or chemicals that are used in various industrial processes. But regardless, almost all the materials transported in a cargo tank are in some manner hazardous. While all truck accidents are potentially deadly, accidents involving tanker trucks can be especially so. This is because tanker trucks transport materials that may be flammable, poisonous or in other ways dangerous should a spill occur.
Therefore, it is vital that cargo tanks be properly maintained and damage free. In order to be allowed on the road, cargo tanks must meet Department of Transportation specifications and must be inspected or tested.
Further, cargo tankers must also be tested when there is evidence of leakage, gouges, cuts, dents or any abrasions that may cause it to be unsafe to use for transporting hazardous materials. And when a cargo tank is tested, a qualified observer must be present.
It is vital that cargo tanks are capable of safely and securely containing hazardous materials. If a tanker truck should get into an accident and overturn, a small imperfection, such as a corroded area, could cause a breach that allows for a spill. Such an event could be especially catastrophic if it occurs on a busy thoroughfare or in a well-populated neighborhood.
Those exposed to spilled hazardous materials could suffer such serious injuries as blindness, lung damage and gastrointestinal damage. What’s more, often hazardous materials are highly flammable. Victims could be seriously burned should a spilled chemical burst into flames.
Companies that transport hazardous materials have a care of duty to all others on the road to make sure their tanker trucks meet all applicable safety requirements. In addition, tanker truck drivers should have the requisite licensing that validates their qualifications to operate their rigs.
Should a tanker truck spill harm you or a member of your family, you may wish to contact a Texas truck accident attorney. The attorney could assess the details of the case and act as your representative as you pursue appropriate compensation.