Oilfields are inherently dangerous environments. Not only is there heavy equipment that can easily cause accidents and injuries, but once the oil is extracted, it then has to be transported in specially-equipped trucks.
These trucks are notorious for causing crashes that can be catastrophic and devastating to anyone affected.
If you have been injured by an oilfield truck, there is a good chance that you are eligible to seek compensation for the damages you suffered as a result. Our team of experienced New Mexico truck accident attorneys at Stewart + Harmonson can help you build the strongest case for your claim.
Common Causes Of Oilfield Truck Crashes
While many factors can potentially contribute to an oilfield truck crash in New Mexico, some are far more common than others. Below are the 5 most common reasons that an oilfield truck may be the cause of a devastating crash.
1. Uneven & Partial Loading
Sometimes in the interest of getting a load on its way to a destination, it will be dispatched with only a partial load. For most commercial trucks this isn’t very dangerous, but with oilfield trucks carrying liquid loads that becomes much more important. The load and shift change the balance and handling of the truck, making the operation much more dangerous.
2. Operator Negligence
Truck drivers can be negligent while driving, just like anyone else. The difference being they are operating a large commercial vehicle full of a dangerous and flammable substance. Speeding, distracted driving, operating under the influence, aggressive driving, and more can all contribute to crashes.
3. Driver Inexperience
Driving commercial vehicles is a skill that requires extensive training and practice, and this training and experience are even more vital for drivers piloting a truck full of flammable liquid oil. Not only are liquid loads much more challenging to transport safely, but the hiring pressure in the oilfield industry may cause the company to cut corners during training or licensing.
4. Neglected Maintenance
Maintenance is a vital part of maintaining the safety of any commercial vehicle. Some companies try to save time by cutting corners on these safety checks, leading to a potentially dangerous vehicle being cleared for operation.
5. Long Work Hours & Reduced Rest Time
Commonly workers in the oilfield industry will work long shifts of at least 12 hours, and sometimes up to 15 hours or more, leading to significant exhaustion. While most commercial truck operators must rest more than 30 hours following a shift, oilfield drivers have an exemption that allows them to drive after only 24 hours of “rest.”
How can a New Mexico Truck Accident Attorney Help?
It can be very challenging to build a successful claim for damages when a crash involved an oilfield truck. Not only will the oilfield company have its legal team, but its insurer is likely to fight your claim every step of the way.
By working with a local truck accident injury attorney with experience winning similar cases, you’ll have a powerful ally on your side, armed with priceless knowledge and unrivaled industry experience. You’ll be able to leverage their skills and professional experience to build the strongest case possible, helping you to recover more of the damages your claim includes.
Contact Stewart + Harmonson Today
The team at Stewart + Harmonson has more than 4 decades of combined experience handling the most sensitive oilfield injury cases, and we’re ready to put that experience to work for you. We’ll work as your advocate and legal representative through the entire claims process, to help you recover the maximum damages you’re entitled to. Reach out today and discuss the details of your case in a confidential environment with a trusted member of our team.