Schlachman, Belsky, Weiner & Davey, P.A.

Baltimore Law Blog

Several Maryland residents recently were roused from their homes and businesses following a disturbing evening incident. A truck accident involving a tractor-trailer full of propane startled many and left a giant fireball with loud explosions.

The truck crashed around 9 p.m. at an intersection with a large curve on a steep hill. The driver of the truck, who was pronounced dead at the scene, apparently lost control of the vehicle, causing it to strike utility poles and a street light before flipping over and catching fire.

What followed were several loud booms and an exploding fireball, which left individuals in the area scrambling to flee from the scene. Multiple fire departments were called in and were able to get the fire under control after some time.

Fortunately, no other individuals were involved or injured by the accident. However, the crash left 148 customers without power due to the downed utility lines, although most had their power restored by the following day.

The truck company provided no comment. Witnesses, however, remarked that motorists typically drive too fast on that stretch of road. Officials noted that speed limits and traffic signs have been imposed to handle the dangerous stretch of road, but inattentive truck drivers and speeding remain a common problem.

Typically, large truck accidents are caused by a truck's performance limitations, such as an inability to brake in a given space, combined with a driver's lack of knowledge of the truck's limitations. Such accidents pose greater dangers than ordinary car accidents, particularly in cases like the above where a truck is transporting hazardous materials. In these situations, secondary injuries may result from burning and respiratory injuries caused by the accident. In the event of a lawsuit, these additional injuries may be part of an overall claim against the negligent parties.

Source: Baltimore Sun, "One dead, as tanker truck carrying gasoline crashes, burns in Port Deposit," Erika Butler, Marissa Gallo and Allen Vought, Aug. 26, 2012

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