There are certain businesses who need to transport hazardous materials that become very problematic if there is an accident. When someone is injured during these kinds of accidents, the civil law holds the company responsible to a higher standard of care due to the dangerous nature of their business. 

Rescue workers and hazardous materials crews had to respond to a truck accident in Lexington County, South Carolina where over 100 car batteries caught on fire.

Truck fire releases poisonous fumes onto the highway

The incident happened on a Friday afternoon near mile marker 49 on Interstate 20 eastbound. Traffic in the area was shut down across several lanes for hours after the incident. 

When Lexington County Sheriff’s Deputies arrived, they found that approximately 150 car batteries inside of the semi truck had been burning due to the collision. Hazardous materials crews remained at the scene for many hours to determine the environmental impact of the fumes and chemicals released during the fire. Their findings were still pending at the time of the report. 

In total, two fire trucks, a battalion chief, a water tanker, and a squad car from the county fire department all had to respond to the area. Rescue workers do not believe that the driver or anyone else nearby was hurt during the initial impact.

Photos of the scene showed the entire semi trailer on fire while firefighters wearing respirators attempted to control the flames in the area.  

Lexington County is west of the city of Columbia.

Liability for hazardous materials

Trucking companies and other businesses that transport hazardous materials are exposed to greater liability because of the potential for disasters like this fire. Some businesses may purchase high risk insurance policies to minimize the potential for losses during an incident. However, the law will also hold these kinds of trucking companies to a higher standard of strict liability.  

Negligence cases and motor vehicle accidents

In a standard negligence case, the plaintiff will have to prove that they were injured when the defendant was responsible for a careless action or mistake. In cases involving hazardous materials, the issue of liability is often much more favorable to the plaintiff. After this initial step, the lawyer for the injured party can make an argument for damages or financial losses related to the accident. This can be a large amount if it includes lost wages, medical treatment, and property damage. After life changing injuries, non-economic losses for emotional pain can also become a part of damages. 

Get assistance from a personal injury attorney in Columbia

There are attorneys who help clients throughout South Carolina with their injuries and related lawsuits for financial compensation. To speak with a professional about your personal situation, contact:

Louthian Law Firm, P.A.

1116 Blanding St., #3A, Columbia, SC 29201


[email protected]

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