As you transport petroleum products in Texas and across the country, your responsibility while driving a cargo tank truck full of hazardous materials is much higher than that of other drivers. Not only does the size and weight of your commercial vehicle pose an increased risk to smaller vehicles on the road, your cargo may create its own hazards. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration provides statistics and warnings to help you minimize the chances of rolling your tank truck.
Road and weather conditions can be contributing factors, but they are not as significant as you may think. More than half of all tank truck rollovers happen on straight stretches of road, clear of moisture, and two-thirds are during daylight hours. A rollover crash is more likely to occur if you have a partial load.
Sudden maneuvers taken to avoid a collision contribute to as many as 10 percent of rollovers, and faulty brakes played a role in a whopping 54 percent of the crashes in one research study. Failing to check your truck’s conditions at the beginning and ending of each day’s travel could lead to vehicle and tire issues. Making turns incorrectly leads to many crashes, as well.
Driver error is a major contributor to this type of crash, and this does not only include rookie mistakes. Regardless of how long you have been driving a cargo tank truck, you may be just as susceptible to fatigue and distractions. This information is provided for educational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as legal advice.