One of the most frightening types of truck accidents is when the truck is carrying hazardous materials. These accidents can often cause explosions, chemical spills, and fires, resulting in even more devastating injuries and fatalities to the victims.
Chemicals That Could Be on the Truck Next to You and the Injuries They Could Cause
Big-rigs driving on Southern California roads and highways could be carrying a wide range of dangerous substances. Some of these materials are so deadly that truckers transporting them are required to have a hazardous materials endorsement on their commercial driver’s licenses and receive special training. In addition, the trucks carrying these materials must be marked. Hazardous materials truckers could be carrying include:
- Explosives like dynamite, fireworks, or ammunition
- Gases like propane and helium
- Flammable liquids like gasoline
- Poisonous and infectious substances like potassium cyanide and anthrax
- Radioactive materials like uranium
- Environmentally hazardous materials like cleaning fluids, pesticides, and by-products of manufacturing processes
- Corrosive materials like battery fluid
In these accidents, a highway or road could be closed and residents in the surrounding area evacuated if dangerous chemicals or other hazardous materials are released onto the roadway or into the air or the substances catch on fire. Sometimes simply breathing in the toxic substance can cause injuries. Victims of these accidents face the risk of some of the most serious life-threatening injuries and death, including:
- Chemical burns and other severe burns
- Traumatic brain injury and neurological damage
- Eye problems, including irritated, red, and burning eyes or serious problems with vision
- Respiratory problems, such as shortness of breath, chronic bronchitis, asthma, and other lung problems
- A suppressed immune system where a person could be more susceptible to other illnesses
- Psychological problems, including depression and mood swings
A victim of these accidents can suffer life-altering, permanent injuries that could prevent him from working again and require medical treatment for the rest of his life. However, he may be entitled to compensation from the trucker and the trucking company that caused his accident.
Have you been injured in a crash with a truck carrying hazardous materials? Was a family member killed? Check out our Verdicts & Settlements to see how we’ve helped people like you.