Tanker Truck Accidents
Any collision with a truck is likely to cause serious harm. But when the truck involved is a tanker truck, carrying highly flammable, hazardous, or otherwise dangerous liquids or cargo, the potential for a catastrophic or fatal injury mounts. The Miami truck accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Robert Dixon can assist South Florida residents who have been hurt or lost loved ones due to the carelessness of commercial drivers or their employers. We are dedicated to making sure that those responsible for devastating injuries or needless losses of life are held legally accountable for their actions.Pursuing Compensation after a Tanker Truck Crash
If you have been involved in a collision with a tanker truck, depending on the situation, you may be entitled to damages through a personal injury lawsuit. To establish liability, a victim must usually show that the defendant, or defendants, breached a duty of care. Truck drivers not only are bound by all motorists’ duty of care to act as a reasonable and prudent person would act under similar circumstances, but also they must adhere to state and federal trucking regulations. A driver, or his or her employer, who is found to be in violation of a state or federal regulation would likely be found to have breached the duty of care.
For a victim to prevail in a negligence claim, the violation would need to be a direct and foreseeable cause of the crash. The injured person must also show that he or she incurred damages as a result. Once negligence is proven, damages that may be available often include past and future medical costs, lost income and earning capacity, and pain and suffering. If a tanker truck accident results in a tragic death, certain relatives may pursue a wrongful death lawsuit to receive compensation for funeral and burial expenses, among other damages.
Due to the nature of these accidents, and the various parties with a stake in the outcome of the legal action, the spoliation of evidence is a factor to consider. Spoliation occurs when key evidence is altered, destroyed, or intentionally lost in an effort to avoid legal liability. If spoliation is found, courts may institute sanctions against culpable parties by entering default judgments, striking pleadings, or even sometimes dismissing claims.Causes and Factors Involved in Tanker Truck Collisions
Although no two instances are the same, some commonalities exist regarding tanker truck accidents. Recurrent causes of these collisions include:
- Improper loading of a tanker truck’s liquid cargo, which can cause extreme weight shifting and instability;
- The tanker’s limited maneuverability due to its size and shape, which makes some roadways more dangerous for travel;
- The brake systems used on tanker trucks, which require special knowledge that some truck drivers may not have;
- Equipment failures; and
- Driver inexperience or lack of training.
Tanker truck accidents can be particularly dangerous, especially if the cargo is hazardous material. If a tanker explodes, there may be severe burns. When these injuries are caused by a truck driver’s negligence, the driver as well as the trucking company should be held accountable.Explore Your Options with a Miami Lawyer after a Truck Accident
If you or someone you love was hurt due to a negligent truck driver or company, the Miami truck accident attorneys at the Law Offices of Robert Dixon can help you determine your next steps. Our motor vehicle collision lawyers also can represent injured people in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and other cities throughout Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties. Call (877) 499-4878 or contact us online to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation about your claim.