California drivers face a lot of unwanted hazards on the road. The hazards can include careless or reckless driving, gridlock, flooding, or snow on the road. Another sight motorists may want to avoid are those giant tanker trucks that travel our freeways and highways day and night.
These tankers transport valuable resources, including fuel for our cars, but their long, high profile are not a reassuring sight in the rearview mirror.
California fuel tanker truck accidents are rare, but it’s easy to see how a collision might lead to significant injuries for anyone in a smaller vehicle. And once you’ve been hurt in an accident, you’ll likely be curious about who should be held responsible for such a collision.
A Free Case Consultation After a Tanker Truck Accident
A frightening impact with a tanker truck may leave you or a loved one seriously injured. It’s important that your focus is on the healing process and not on the struggle with a big rig driver’s insurance or the driver’s employer to get financial assistance.
Finding out how much your injury case is worth is often the easiest way to avoid being robbed of compensation by insurance companies. You can evaluate what you should expect by talking to a real California Truck Accident Attorney.
Martin Gasparian, the founder of Maison Law, is a highly regarded personal injury lawyer serving California victims. He offers a free case consultation to victims and their families to make sure you all secure the financial support you need in recovery after an accident.
Tanker Truck Driver Dangers in California
Tanker truck drivers are at two safety disadvantages when compared to normal drivers.
First, they are on the clock while behind the wheel. Second, they are driving much heavier, bigger vehicles carrying potentially explosive materials.
It’s why these big rigs are such a dangerous risk to everyone they travel near. Here are just a few of the hazardous decisions drivers can make:
- Speeding Trucks: Fuel tanker trucks can weigh 26,000lbs empty and then add in the weight of 5,000 gallons of fuel. It can take a very long time to slow one of these big rigs down. When they get moving at top speed, it’s a concern for every other motorist, pedestrian, and cyclist.
- Exhausted Truck Drivers: Truck drivers can be working a long day or just be suffering from a lack of sleep the night before. There are laws that govern how long a driver can continuously drive, but that doesn’t mean truck drivers are sleeping. This sleepiness affects alertness on the road.
- DUI Truck Drivers: Big rig drivers receive drug tests but they can skirt these tests by knowing when to expect them. Drivers also must keep a lower blood alcohol content to be considered sober than normal drivers.
- Distracted Drivers: Tanker drivers can be receiving updates to their routes through phone calls, texts, or even email. They can also be relying on computer navigation to find their destinations. Taking their eyes off the road for either of these issues means a large vehicle is basically traveling blind along a freeway.
- Mechanical Failure: Tankers must be constantly monitored for wear and tear and the chance of a mechanical failure. Tires and brake maintenance are extremely important. Any neglect of these duties that cause an accident can leave a trucking company fully liable.
Tanker Truck Companies May Be Liable in your Accident
You may see a 76 tanker beside you or a Shell tanker in your mirror. You might spot a tanker that is fully reflective without a brand name attached to it. A tanker may be owned by a local trucking company or could be part of a worldwide oil corporation.
In any case, you can be up against lawyers and corporate attorneys when you file a claim for damages against a tanker driver or the employer who hired the big rig driver. Where corporate owners are concerned, most of their drivers are covered with liability insurance to provide care for their drivers’ victims.
However, some drivers are contracted out from smaller, local companies. These drivers may have commercial trucking insurance or their employers could provide insurance. The smaller a company gets or if drivers work for themselves, the chances are an insurance policy won’t have high enough limits to cover every recovery bill you collect.
A California personal injury lawyer will be working to identify every party that may share blame in your accident. This is the most effective way to uncover more insurance money to make sure you don’t pay out of your own savings.
What Can I Receive Compensation for in an Insurance Claim?
California grants accident victims up to two years to file an accident claim against a tanker truck driver’s insurance. This deadline also applies to a case filed against a tanker truck company.
Giving your personal injury lawyer the earliest chance to collect fresh evidence and track down witnesses on your behalf is the best idea. Take advantage of a free consultation with a skilled personal injury attorney as soon after your accident as possible.
Your California tanker truck accident lawyer will be sending an insurance company and a trucking company a list of every hardship you’ve faced since the accident. This list will also note any possible support you’ll need in the future.
These are just a few of the factors that can earn you and your family compensation after an accident:
- Hospital bills
- Rehab treatment/equipment
- Permanent disability/disfigurement
- Physical pain and mental distress
- Travel for medical treatment
- Lost wages from work
- Loss of consortium (Being without the support of a spouse, partner, family member, etc.)
Contact a California Fuel Tanker Truck Accident Lawyer
If you or a family member come to harm in an accident caused by a big rig driver’s mistake please consult with a California Truck Accident Attorney as soon as possible. There are benefits available to you and your family that insurance companies won’t be informing you of.
Attorney Martin Gasparian offers a free and confidential case evaluation. Mr. Gasparian works hard to make sure clients are allowed to rebuild their lives without worrying over hospital bills and lost paychecks.
A free case evaluation is also available to families who have lost a loved one in a tragic accident. It’s critical that family members understand the benefits available to them after a tragedy.