Lenahan Law Firm Blog
Texas leads nation in truck accident fatalities. In a recent year, there 649 commercial motor vehicle fatalities in Texas. hat’s 272 more deaths than the second leading state.
A fully loaded big rig weighs about 80,000 pounds. When a truck crashes into a regular passenger vehicle, the accident is a lot more likely to kill or injure the people traveling in the car than the truck driver.
When a jackknife accident happens on the highway, it causes a major disruption in traffic because several lanes are likely to be blocked by the truck’s cab and trailer. This can result in a major pileup with several cars crashing into each other.
A jackknife accident can be a harrowing experience for you and your passengers. There’s more than one way a jackknife accident can occur, and it may be difficult to determine whose negligence is responsible for your accident.
Cycling is a wonderful way to get around. It’s fun, environmentally friendly, and great for your cardiovascular system. But cyclists face unique challenges that aren’t always appreciated by people who operate motor vehicles.
Cyclists have all the same rights and responsibilities as car and truck drivers, but accidents are much more life-threatening for cyclists. Unfortunately, drivers don’t always watch out for cyclists and give them the respect they deserve.
A roundabout is a circular intersection where drivers travel counterclockwise around a center island. Roundabouts are popular in Europe, and they are becoming more common in Texas, too. There are no lights or traffic signals in a roundabout, and traffic flows continuously.
Chemical plant explosions happen far too often in Texas. Major incidents in recent years include:
- ExxonMobil Baytown refinery explosion on December 23, 2021: Four refinery workers were severely injured.
- Wendland 1H Well Burleson County explosion on January 29, 2020: Three fatalities occurred at the gas well.
- Watson Grinding Houston explosion on January 24, 2020: Two people were killed, and extensive damage was done to nearby property.
- TPC Group Port Neches explosion in November 2019: This incident released more than 500 pounds of particulate matter and more than 1,000 pounds of butadiene, a flammable compound, into the atmosphere.
- KMCO LLC Crosby fire and explosion on April 2, 2019: Fire and explosion at the chemical processing and manufacturing facility caused one death and multiple injuries.
- Tri-Chem Industries Fort Worth explosion and fire in March 2018: One person was killed and two were injured.
Working on an oil rig is one of the most hazardous occupations. In a recent five-year period, 489 oil and gas extraction workers were killed on the job, as reported by OSHA.
Proper, fire-resistant safety gear is essential for oil rig workers, who face a variety of hazards and dangerous conditions, including:
- Explosions and fires
- Chemical exposure
- Confined spaces
- Vehicle accidents
- Struck-by, caught-in, and caught-between accidents
Dallas metro area roadways include interstates, U.S. routes, state highways, loops, spurs, and tollways. Many highways in the area have more than one name. For example, the Tom Landry Highway is also known as I-30 between I-35E in Dallas and I-35W in Fort Worth. The Elmer Weaver Freeway is also U.S. Highway 67 from I-635 south. As in most major cities today, dangerous driving behavior can lead to accidents and make driving on Dallas roads a risk.
Serious accidents and injuries have been associated with Amazon vehicles, drivers, and Delivery Service Partners. In November 2021, a ProPublica investigation identified more than 60 accidents involving Amazon delivery contractors since June 2015 that caused serious injuries and cost the lives of 10 people, as reported by the New York Times. Fatal and catastrophic Amazon delivery truck accidents include:
- A nine-month-old baby who was killed when a driver delivering Amazon packages rear-ended her mother’s jeep in a rented box truck
- A 24-year-old man who was rear-ended by an Amazon delivery van and sustained brain and spinal cord injuries that left him confined to a motorized wheelchair
The federal government has loosened restrictions on teenage truck drivers to address the driver shortage and supply chain issues arising from the pandemic. A pilot program proposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will allow drivers ages 18 and older to operate commercial vehicles in interstate commerce.
The Dallas-Fort Worth area has seen a surge in fatal trucking accidents, with crash rates increasing throughout the pandemic. Motor vehicle accidents and fatalities were expected to decrease when COVID-19 dramatically reduced traffic. However, traffic deaths increased while vehicle miles traveled dropped.
This is particularly true of large commercial truck accidents in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. The 12 counties that make up the metroplex experienced 78 fatal crashes involving commercial vehicles in 2019, 90 in 2020, and 92 in 2021.