By John Cooper, Big Rig Accident Lawyer
I have written on numerous occasions about how crashes involving tanker trucks can be particularly devastating. This was illustrated this month in Spartanburg County, South Carolina, where three people died after fiery, multiple-vehicle accident shut down Interstate 26.
The triple-fatal crash was reported at 7:35 a.m. last Sunday morning on I-26 westbound near mile marker 17. The North Spartanburg Fire District said I-26 westbound between New Cut Road and John Dodd Road remained closed for most of the day, given the seriousness of this big rig crash.
Lance Cpl. Bill Rhyne of the fire district told a subsequent press conference that a tractor-trailer involved in the crash was transporting gasoline. The fire from the wreck produced extreme heat which gave the victims little chance to escape. Two SUVs and a pickup truck were also involved in the collision.
The Spartanburg County Coroner’s Office identified one of the victims as 31-year-old John Daniel Fink of Zirconia, North Carolina. Tragically his nine-year-old son was also killed in the collision. The third victim was identified as Donna Renee Bailey of Marysville, Tennessee.
The fire was so severe that a special apparatus, a crash truck used to put out fires from plane crashes, was required to deal with the fire on I-26.
One person was airlifted from the scene and taken to Spartanburg Regional Hospital before being transferred to the Augusta Burn Center.
When 18 wheelers have a flammable cargo like this on board, they can be an accident waiting to happen. Although truckers who carry hazardous loads are subject to strict rules, we still read about far too many accidents like this occurring.
The Hazardous Materials Transportation Act comes into play when trucks are carrying dangerous cargoes. The rules are laid down by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) hazmat trucking regulations. Hazardous materials include explosives, poisons, corrosives such as acids, infectious substances and radioactive substances.
These additional regulations go above and beyond those regulations that apply to regular cargo transport.
For example, states can designate certain highways on which hazardous cargos cannot be driven. Residential areas come to mind. There are other regulations that apply specifically to truckers moving hazardous materials about the country.
If you have lost a loved one in a serious trucking accident or have been injured due to the fault of a tractor trailer driver, you may have grounds to file a claim against the trucking company. Call Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers at 757.455.0077 today for a free consultation.