A tractor-trailer caught fire on the Queensboro Bridge, stopping traffic in both directions, reported the New York Post (9.2.13). The 18-wheeler was headed into Manhattan when it burst into flames on the lower level of the bridge. The thick, black smoke from the double-decker span’s lower level could be seen for miles.
Firefighters needed nearly two hours to put out the blaze.
Part of the Ed Koch Queensboro bridge is estimated to be closed for more than six days. Fortunately, there were no injuries reported due to this accident.
The cause of the fire was unreported.
Trailer-truck accidents and Workers’ Comp laws in New York
Frequently, accidents like this one are caused by truck company negligence. Trucking companies are required to maintain their vehicles according to both federal and state standards. The many laws that regulate trucking companies include those that set standards relating to the maintenance of each truck in the fleet. Failure to maintain a truck properly may increase risks of events such as fires.
In other cases, truck drivers may be responsible for tractor-trailer fire accidents. Regardless of whether the company or the driver is negligent, if the truck driver is employed by a New York company and injured while working, he or she may be eligible to seek compensation for resulting losses. According to the Workers’ Compensation Law in New York State, employees in most instances can collect compensation for their injuries.
Tractor-trailer fires can be catastrophic events that cause serious injury or death to truck drivers and others. According to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, there were 11,648 large truck crashes in 2011, 89 of which were fatal. To lessen the risk of serious injury, all safety and equipment regulations must be carefully followed.
Third-party lawsuits and workers’ compensation lawyers
Flammable materials on a truck increase the risk of a tractor-trailer fire in the event of an accident.
Fuel fires can occur when the engine’s fuel meets the battery spark. If the battery is placed in an exposed location that does not help to prevent a fuel fire, the party responsible for placing the battery there can be held liable for damages caused by a fire or explosion.
A truck driver who is injured on the job may seek workers’ compensation as well as additional compensation by bringing a lawsuit against one or more third parties who contributed to causing the injury. The third party may be a manufacturer of the vehicle or its parts, mechanics who work on the truck, the company responsible for the inspection of the truck, or others.
If it is determined that a third party negligently caused a worker’s accident-related injuries, workers’ compensation lawyers at The Perecman Firm will fight to get the maximum compensation for medical expenses, lost income, disability, pain and suffering, and other damages.
If someone had died in the accident, then dependents may be entitled to wrongful death damages.