One of the most frustrating things about tractor-trailer accidents is the lengthy cleanup required, especially when the tractor-trailer is carrying liquid cargo. When a tanker crashes and spills its cargo on the roadway, the potential for a chain reaction car accident is increased. In avoiding spilt cargo, other motorists may swerve out of the way and into each other or a ditch. If they do not swerve out of the way, they could lose control driving over liquid cargo.
Quite recently, a New Jersey roadway was flooded with milk. It sounds harmless, but a thin layer of any liquid on a highway can cause motorists to lose control and crash. At approximately 3:29 a.m. on the morning of Monday, April 7, a tanker carrying 6,000 gallons of milk was driving through Mahwah, New Jersey on Route 287. As the tanker approached mile-marker 64.9, the 26-year-old driver lost control of the vehicle. The tanker swerved into the left lane and flipped over onto the median, spilling all 6,000 gallons of its contents onto the roadway.
Investigators are still unsure as to the cause of the crash. The majority of trucking accidents are caused by driver error as opposed to environmental factors, such as inclement weather and hazardous road conditions. According to a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) study, 44 percent of trucking accidents occurred because the driver was taking over-the-counter medications. Eighteen percent of trucking accidents are caused by driver fatigue. Given that the previously mentioned accident occurred in the early morning, driver fatigue could have been a likely cause of the accident.
Federal law mandates that truckers cannot work more than 14 hours a day, and only 11 of those 14 can be spent driving. As such, shifts must be preceded by 10 hours of rest to ensure that drivers are not behind the wheel with heavy eyelids. In addition, there are limitations on the number of consecutive shifts a driver can work.
I Was Injured In A Truck Accident Caused By A Sleepy Driver, How Can I Prove It?
If you think that the truck driver that caused your roadway accident was driving while fatigued, consult with a lawyer. An experienced truck accident attorney will search through the driver’s work logs and trip tickets, which record the time of cargo pickup and delivery. By comparing the two sources of information, a lawyer can make an informed estimate of the hours the trucker drove. Clearly, building a case against a trucking company is a complicated matter and best pursed in conjunction with an experienced attorney.
[Did You Know: According to the FMCSA, 22 percent of trucking accidents involve driving too fast in unsafe conditions.]
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