Archived Webinars

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The Cargo Tank Truck Wreck: The First 24 Hours

TASA ID: 3086

On Thursday, September 9, 2010, at 2 p.m. EDT, The TASA Group, Inc., in conjunction with commercial motor vehicle and cargo tank truck expert Scott L. Turner, presented a free, one-hour, interactive webinar for all legal professionals, The Cargo Tank Truck Wreck: The First 24-Hours.

During this interactive program, our presenter discussed the basic, vital points of proper documentation and actions taken, such as, but not limited to:

  • USDOT Cargo Tank Truck specifications
  • Cargo Tank expectations of performance in rollovers
  • Materials of transport with Cargo Tanks
  • Rollover factors of the Cargo Tank; driver and equipment
  • Tank Truck fires/explosions and common causes
  • Inspection requirements of Cargo Tanks
  • Public Sector responders to Cargo Tank Truck emergencies
  • Private Sector responders to Cargo Tank Truck emergencies
  • VIR's, RODS's, Q-files, Post Trip inspections
  • Level 1 FMCSA post-wreck inspection

About the Expert

Scott Turner is a Commercial Motor Vehicle Expert and a Panelist for The National Academy of Sciences, Transportation Research Council. He is a Level 1 FMCSA Inspector; Weights and Measures Master; and HazMat and Cargo Tank Truck Response Specialist with over 20 years of experience involving in excess of 1,000 CMV wrecks and 200 cargo tank wrecks.


Matt: Good afternoon. Welcome to today's webinar "The Cargo Tank Truck Wreck: The First 24 Hours." During today's presentation, Scott Turner will cover the following. USDOT cargo tank truck specifications. Cargo tank expectations of performance in rollovers. Materials of transport with cargo tanks. Rollover factors of the cargo tank: driver and equipment. tank truck fires/explosions and common causes. Inspection requirements of Cargo Tanks. Public Sector responders to cargo tank truck emergency. Private sector responders to cargo tank truck emergencies. VIR's, ROD's, Q-files, and Post Trip inspections. And Level 1 FMCSA post-wreck inspection.

The presenter for today's webinar is Scott Turner. Scott is a Commercial Motor Vehicle Expert and a Panelist for The National Academy of Science, Transportation Research Council. He is a Level I FMCSA Inspector, Weights and Measures Master and HazMat and cargo tank truck Response Specialist with over 20 years of experience involving in excess of 1,000 commercial motor vehicle wrecks and 200 cargo tank wrecks. If you have a question that pertains to the presentation, we do ask that you use Q&A or chat features which are found on the right hand side of the screen. 

I pointed them out with the arrow pointing to the right. Scott will do his best to answer your questions during this presentation. Approximately one hour after the event we'll send out an email with a link to the archive recording of the webinar, so we do ask that you take time to fill out the survey that will appear on your screen after the webinar is over. I now invite you to sit back, relax, and enjoy the presentation. I'm going to turn it over to our distinguished presenter, Scott Turner. Scott it's all yours.

Scott: Good afternoon, folks. I appreciate you taking the time to come and join us today with this webinar. And I hope that you walk away with some valuable information on this that are going to help you in your cases via defense or pointers going forward with regard to cargo tank truck wrecks. All of the photographs you're going to see, by the way, are all tank trucks that I have responded to in my career, which, as Matt said, has been well in excess of 200 tank truck crashes, whether it be fires or just releases as a result of the rollover or split in half or what have you. One of the first things that I think is very important that we, that we get out of the way is to get the real basics, the one on one of cargo tank trucks and have an understanding, a general understanding.

Because I hear this in the legal community quite often that there's really not a good solid foundation of understanding of the different type specs, what we call spec cargo tanks trucks, and their purposes and the type of commodities that they would transport. And it's important to understand that the basic difference between these type tank trucks because of the commodities that they will carry, as well as performance related issues with the tank truck in with respect to their daily performance and issues as well as performance when they actually roll over. What happens to these tank trucks? For example, an MC-306/DOT-406 type tank truck, which is more of a nomenclature of a fancy term of calling a gasoline cargo tank truck or a petroleum type carrier. 

[inaudible 00:03:54] all things like gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, even getting into ethanols and things of that nature. But if you see, for example Shell or Sunoco, or Exxon on the side of it, it's an MC-306/DOT-406 type cargo tank truck. That type tank truck when it rolls over, it typically comes apart pretty drastically. It's only 316 Central aluminum. And here's...I'm going to go to the next slide here. There's a good example of an MC-306/DOT-406 type cargo tank truck. The backside of it is kind of like it looks like it's a lopsided or sideways egg, it's kind of oval. And that tank truck right here, that 9,500 gallons of gasoline going down the road is only, there's only three-sixteenth inch of aluminum that's between you and that gasoline that's inside that's contained inside that tank truck. And it's aluminum for weight purposes. 

And unfortunately the good side is, is that with it being aluminum is that they can carry more product for commercial purposes. The bad side is when it rolls it typically comes apart pretty bad. However there is an unintended consequence of it being aluminum as well that when it does roll over aluminum is a spark free metal. That's why a lot of times when you hear of an MC-306/DOT-406 over the news, the gasoline tanker crashed, rolled over and it didn't catch on fire, and the reason being is that it is aluminum. You can take an aluminum can and I'm not going to drag too much technical stuff into this, by the way, I'm giving you a general understanding of this. You can take an aluminum pan and put it against a grinding wheel and not create any sparks whereas you could take a piece of steel put it against a grinding wheel that a DOT 412 type tank truck is made out of steel type [inaudible 00:05:42] and they will create sparks. All right? But, that's an MC-306/DOT-406 type tank truck. The newer types spec tanks that are here are DOT-406. Anything that's manufactured since 1998 is required to be a DOT-406. The older ones are MC-306's, pre 98. 

And they're going to be on the road for many, many years to come. So these tanks' service life a lot of times you'll see them out here, they're over 30 years, provided that they can continue to pass inspection from thickness standpoints and so forth. And we're going to cover those issues in a little bit later on in the presentation. The next type tank truck that's a very common... By the way, going back to the MC-306/DOT-406, this is the most commonly used cargo tank truck on the roads in the United States because the number one product, of course, that is transported from a hazardous material standpoint in the United States is of course gasoline. And the most complacently dealt with hazardous material that's out there as well.

MC-307/DOT-407. And this again goes 1998. Anything that was manufactured post-1998 would have to be a DOT-407/MC-307. MC simply stands for Motor Carrier, DOT stands for Department of Transportation. This is what we call the stainless steel jacketed type tank truck. And these are what we call the workhorse of the industry. These can transport just about any type of hazardous material liquid that you have out there other than very, very aggressive type assets. And I'll for simplicity purposes, I'll just say very aggressive type assets. But they will typically carry just about any type of liquid phase matter that you may have out there and it has this material. This one here has to be a two holder unit. In other words, it's got two compartments in it. It carries different type products. This right here is an MC-312/DOT-412. This is an acid tanker.

These here are reserved basically preparing assets. They're very simplistically set. They're typically rubber lined or they're fiberglass lined inside of this tank truck, there's a liner. So a lot of times you'll have situations where if a tank wasn't inspected correctly, from a fitness standpoint, on this type tank truck, you get etching on the inside of the tank, and eventually as it's going down the road and it has 36,000 pounds of weighting on it and it splits right in half. And you'll see a picture of one of those in a little bit where a threefold tank truck just essentially driving down the road, it just cut right in half because nobody realized that the etching of the acid had actually punched a hole or breached the hole in the rubber liner, what we call a rubber boot inside the tank and it allows the acid to eat away at the inside of the tank truck. So you get different type products. Maybe today sulfuric acid. Tomorrow, hydrochloric acid, etc. And then you get exothermic reactions in there. 

And those exothermic reactions will cause a degradation of that tank. And now as it's just going down the road, the integrity of that tank is compromised. And it gets to a certain point where that weight of that acid above it on the bottom of the belly winds up causing it to split in half, if that makes sense to you. I'm not trying to turn anybody into tank truck experts, just to give you a general understanding of what these tanks are all about. This is an MC-331 with no DOT designation. They kept the old design in other words. MC-331, this is that real big case that some of you may be aware of that happened out in Ohio where there was a propane tank that had rolled and caught fire. I'm not going to get into details on it because it's obviously a very active case and there's a lot of federal regulations that are being...as a matter of fact, that's one of the issues that we're dealing with at the National Academy of Sciences right now looking at that particular case and putting that into the mix of the answers that we're getting out of the other end. MC-331 essentially it's a propane tank. 

It's not very often you see too many other factors on these other than UN number 1075 which is gonna indicate liquefied petroleum gas. It's a highly pressurized vessel. It's kind of like, almost like a thermos bottle, if you will, a giant thermos bottle on wheels. This right here is an MC-338. Three thirty eight, is for cryogenic, very, very cold liquids. These drivers on these type tank trucks are probably just about some of the best in the industry as well as the 331's too I may add. Tank truck drivers in general are some of the best drivers in the industry. Incidents do happen, of course. But just a side note on that, from my experiences, some of these guys are very good at what they do. This 338 here, again, it's going to carry cryogenic liquids, for example, oxygen, liquid oxygen. That they'll take you to a hospital and they'll put it in storage tanks and it'd be used throughout the facility, piped in throughout the facility for oxygen purposes, surgery or patients that are laying in their beds and so forth.

Most cargo tank truck wrecks occur on the mainline of highways. This is something that really quite frankly, when I saw the statistics I've been on a number of incidents over the years that have been on interchanges. And for some reason, in the back of my mind, I always felt that most of these occurred on interchanges and that turns out statistically to be not true. The majority of cargo tank truck crashes that occur, occur on the mainline of a highway rather than an interchange. I think that it's just that I happen to live near a bad interchange where I responded to just in that one interchange alone, over a 20-year period, probably about 8 tank truck crashes there alone and it always kind of stuck in my mind. But they commonly do occur where you have straight lines and a lot of times as a result of over-correction. So a driver maybe not paying attention, or we're talking on his phone or something to that effect. 

And next thing he knows he feels his truck being pulled off the soft shoulder and tries to bring it back up abruptly. And when he does the over-correction, he winds up getting that slosh and surge factor, which we will cover it a little bit as well. And the slosh and surge factor typically is what's going to cause because of a higher center of gravity on the tank truck is going to cause that tank to actually roll.

Cargo tank truck roll over risk factors. Vehicle design. What I mean by, I just mentioned it, center of gravity. It's a real big issue right now that's going on, again, with the studies that we're looking at. There's been a lot of things that have been released on this of late as well from various private groups that are out there but we're looking at from the National Academy of Sciences' perspective or group I should say. So the vehicle design and I'm not speaking of the tractor so much, I'm more referring to the tank truck itself. 

And if we're able to lower that tank truck just by a few inches, four inches or so it would substantially reduce the amount of rollovers that actually occur with cargo tank trucks. And that's regardless of what type tank trucks that we're talking about of all the respective tanks we've just covered. By the way, there's one other one in there that is a spec tank that I didn't have on there because I just didn't really want to get into detail. It's an intermodal type tank. It's an ISO tank, ISO. And those intermodal tanks sort of type you see they take them off the ship and they put them on chassis and then they transport it. They still have the same surge factors and slosh factors and have a higher center gravity concern than your standard type tank trucks that are domestic here in the U.S. 

And these type tank trucks, by the way, folks are not to be confused with milk tankers or food grade. You see Archer Daniel Midland, they have out Midwest they have their tanks running food products, soy products and so forth. Milk and things of that nature, products of that nature. They're not to be confused with spec tanks. Those are non-spec tanks. So if the guy down the road is transporting in a, what looks like to be a gasoline tank truck and it has water written on the side of it for pools, it's no longer a spec tank. He will not need that as spec. He will remove the spec plate from the passenger or driver side of the rail of the tank truck itself. All right. So vehicle design, there's a lot of other issues that are involved with prevention of rollovers and a couple others is the braking systems that are being looked at very heavily. And there's a lot of what I'll call a lot of inventions that are coming out now that are allowing brakes to react according to the weight of the...as the truck is approaching into a turn or what have you.

So there's a lot of things that I don't want to discuss in any depth right now. But there's a lot of things going on with that. Load effects. The majority I believe is, I think it's 94%. I have it covered a little bit later on. Ninety four percent, if I'm not mistaken of all tank truck rollovers are less than four loads. Why is that? Well, it's real simple. Just because of the surge factor or the slosh factor. Surge factor is going from rear to forward or from forward to rear. Slosh factor is going left to right in a tank truck. And if you get a combination of slosh and surge with a half tank, it's a very dangerous situation. So that's why you'll see most gasoline type transports out there, if we try to run, if they can, they try to run full load because I've been on incidence that I've come up to an incident and the driver sitting on a curb, after the tank is rolled over. And he sits there and he says, "Geez, I've been making this run for 18 years, that same turn I've taken for 18 years or 15 years, or what have you, 10 years. You know, I do it every day. I don't understand what happened." Then you find out that he was running a 50% load for whatever reason. And that 50% of that load allowed for all that headspace and a headspace caused for that surge to slash factor, when he came around that turn and applied the brakes, maybe a little bit too quickly and the load was pushing...if he was turning left, the load was with the center of gravity was pushing right and forward causing the slosh and surge factor. Highway factors. If you're looking at transitions on highways and so forth, you know, you have a proper transition, if you're the carrier, if you need an attorney that's representing the carrier, is there proper transitions on the highway?

In other words, has it been thought through correctly? Has it been designed correctly? Other highway factors are...by the way, transitions are...if you're not aware, transitions are basically to make sure that you don't have pulling up of water on the highway. So each lane going out from the center, left or right if it's a four or five-lane highway, typically there's going to be a transition where it's going to have a slight pitch going left or right in order to allow run off so you don't have any pulling of water causing possible of hydroplaning. Highway factors also includes construction zones. Construction zones, if you're an attorney for a carrier and one of your trucks is wrecked in a construction zone, you want to find out if the MUTCD regulations were followed. That's really important because quite often and I'm very cognizant of this because I'm an MUTCD certified guy as well, I'm driving through construction zones and I'm always looking to see if these guys are actually setting these zones up correctly. Did they have the proper warnings and it helps to keep my mind fresh on this too. 

Do they have the comb spacing correct, do they have...I'm not getting out and measuring it of course, but I'm using guesstimations on it. Are they giving proper notice and warning of lane closures or shoulder closures and so forth? So I just like to keep myself aware of that. So you want to take a look at that. If they had somebody that was out there that was certified to make sure that lane closure or shoulder closure was done in accordance to the MUTCD regulations. If not, you know, quite frankly, it may not be the carrier's fault. It could very well be the fault of the contracting company that's out there. Also, one other thing is that if that speed limit is actually reduced down in a...let me open this backup. If that speed limit and that construction zone is reduced down to 45, let's say, hypothetically 45 miles an hour, a lot of folks don't realize that, that 45 miles an hour is designed for cars in optimal weather conditions.

So if it's raining out, that truck should really be reduced down to much lower speed than that 45 miles an hour, possibly 35. So the sign is up there for a four-wheel car in optimal driving conditions. So, again, all these highway factors do kick in. Driver factors, we're going to talk about that a little bit later on. But real simply, I mean, part of the driver factors is a person a diabetic is, you know, are there any issues with relation to does a driver have health concerns? Or does he have personal issues that are keeping him awake at night? Believe it or not these things play in. We want to take a look at all these different things and make sure even if we're an attorney, working in-house counsel, working for a transportation company, make sure that these drivers are all following the rules the way that they're supposed to, to make sure that the Safety Department is imposing the rules correctly.

So driver factors, also fatigue. Fatigue is a major factor in that. And there's new regulations that are being kicked [inaudible 00:19:42] right now with respect to hours of service. So the RODs are going to likely change...record of duty status, they're likely going to be changing somewhat. Not much. I don't think there's going to be drastic changes but somewhat over the next several months. Okay, part of tank truck has high center gravity. Again, this is a problem and it is recognized by the cargo tank truck manufacturing industry as well as, of course, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration DOT has really recognized this as being a major problem with regards to cargo tank trucks. I unfortunately don't have the statistics right in front of me, but there is a significant drop, and I don't want to speculate, a significant drop in rollovers once you lower a tank truck and the number is utilized to four inches. 

Once you lower the center gravity of that tank truck by four inches it [inaudible 00:20:39] other problems that prohibit that somewhat from happening with the current designs the way they are. But if you lower that tank truck by four inches, the actual rollover factor ratio, it drops substantially. So vehicle speed. The things that are going to affect center of gravity on a load ship. So in other words, either surge or slosh. It's going to be vehicle speed. All right, how fast was a truck actually going either into that turn or while making that correction trying to get back onto the highway? Or how fast was a vehicle actually going as he was approaching comes over a rolling hill and all of a sudden he sees a parking lot sitting in front of him because it's rush hour and didn't anticipate that? How fast is he going at that point? That's going to cause the surge and that's a good example for surge. E hits those brakes and as he hits those brakes, that half load or that three quarter load that's in tank truck, all surges forward and it continues with the inertia to push him into that traffic or through that traffic light. That's why it should be encouraged whenever at all possible to transport full load.

Turn sharpness. How sharp is the off ramp? If I can tell you the ramp that I had mentioned earlier, I happen to be from New Jersey. And there's a ramp that's down in Parsippany, New Jersey coming up from 287 North on the 80 West. And actually they're rebuilding that entire ramp right now. And it was a long time coming because that was the one that I had been on probably that 8 to 10 tanker crashes in a 20-plus-year experience there. So in that particular ramp, it was so poorly designed that...and this is a good one about roads designs also. And this is where I was talking about highway issues. As you come off that ramp, it maintains a steady degree of a turn.

So it's a steady, easy turn all the way around. And then when you get to the 75%, 80% mark of that turn through the completion of that on-ramp, all of a sudden, it has a notch. And it creates a much more dangerous situation. That's where every single tanker that I had responded to in that off-ramp, on-ramp, every single tanker all blame that same exact notch. What happened is it would take a certain radius, and most of them that radius would tighten up dramatically, because somebody realized that they were running out of room when they were building it in order to be able to get people out without putting them out into the highway before acceleration opportunity. It's a real important factor to look at the highway, the highway transitions, the sharpness of the turns and so forth. Is it a consistent sharpness? 

And remember, again, those speeds coming on to those turns are designed for cars in optimal conditions. They are not designed for tank trucks with an 80% load of [inaudible 00:23:37]. By the way, it's my favorite chemical. It doesn't really exist. Roadway transition. Roadway transition, I've discussed that already. Taking a look at the roadway transition. If it's a newer highway, it may be something that's worthwhile taking a look at. You know, if you're counsel for the tank truck company, you may want to take a look that. Vehicle tripping. Vehicle tripping is where a driver is coming off an off-ramp or even on a highway for that matter and winds up what I call bumping into a curb. And when he bumps into that curb it kind of aggressively causes a surge in product. And that's where you get the ship, the load ship of the center of gravity. It's no longer a steady...

And how he tries to overcorrect. The problem with overcorrecting is once you bump into a turn or you come off with an over-correction, the product sloshes right, if you're going to make a left correction, and then when you go to make your over-correction to the right, it aggressively surges to the left. And now that causes the truck to roll to the left. Partial...I just said it's 94%. I just didn't remember exactly. I just wanted to reaffirm that. Partial loads, 94% of all cargo tank trucks are with rollovers, are with partial loads. Heavy braking in Turns. Driver all of a sudden realizes that he's going a little too fast into that turn. 

And, by the way, folks, just to backup for a second, when I first came out of Marine Corps, I was a driver. I was driving for several years, 18 wheelers over the road. So I understand about this. You know, you get a little complacent driving on the road with your truck or trailer and you come into this turn and all of a sudden, you realize you're going a little too fast. So fortunately, I always haul dry freight. And you go into a little bit heavier braking in order to slow the truck down. And once you do that, if you have a tank truck load, that heavy braking is going to likely cause a surge in product or slosh and a combination slosh-surge of product causing that truck to roll.

Shipping in turns is another one. So down shipping, aggressively, down shipping in turns is another one that can cause load shift of the cargo. And that could likely cause a rollover as well, especially, again, going back to where we were if we're talking about a less than load. Over-correction. I've discussed that already. Slosh and surge factors, excessive speed. Some of these are redundant but need to be brought up. Excessive speed. Turning radius. All right. How tight is that turning radius? The roadway transitions. We discussed that already. Sudden breaking in a turn and for whatever reason did not realize that there's some backup traffic on here and goes into sudden breaking or just realized he's going too fast, he or she realized you're going too fast and they start to apply those breaks suddenly. And it turned, that can cause slosh and surge. 

And a sudden breaking going in a forward direction that would cause a surge factor causing the truck to get pushed through the lane. Sudden maneuvers. Sudden maneuvers, again, is very, very similar to over-corrections, or trying to avoid a car. And actually a study just came out in Europe on truck wrecks, on lorries and truck wrecks. And it shows that...their studies came back showing that 75% of all truck wrecks that occurred in Europe, approximately 75% are all caused by the four wheel car. I would imagine that's relatively consistent with our findings here too looking at the TIFA analysis, which is if you're interested is TIFA. TIFA studies and TIFA analysis give some great data on vehicle wrecks, combination car truck wrecks etc. And I personally myself refer back to that quite frequently in dealing with, you know, building opinions and testimonial issues.

Over-correction, discussed it already. Although it's still it's an issue here as well. Load distribution. What do I mean by load distribution is that as you look at these various tank trucks that we saw earlier on the presentation, your MC-306/DOT-406 and the 307/407, 312/412. Those are the three that I'm referring to when I'm talking about distribution, okay? These tank trucks multi-compartmental units. For example, the one that you're looking at right here laying over on the side, by the way, that's me up on top there drilling a hole in the gasoline tanker. You can kind of see the little...there's like these shiny little boots that are...well, they are called boots, but there's these shiny little things that are just below that rail that runs halfway through the midpoint of the tank. Each one of those is a compartment. This particular tank here was what we call the Four Holer Unit, H-O-L-E-R four a compartmentalized unit.

It has four specific compartments and each compartment can carry a separate gasoline grade product. So that way when the driver goes to a station, he's running low to a station, he's got, say 1,000 gallons of ultra on board. He has two compartments...well, one compartment. He has two compartments that are completely full with regular etc., etc. And he's got one with diesel. So if the gas station only ordered, let's say, that one compartment is 2,500 gallons. These are 9,800 gallon tank trucks. Let's say that the gas station only ordered 3,000 gallons of a specific type product of a regular and they have a total of 6,000 gallon space to put that in, that's going to cause you to run a partial load there by exposing in greater to the risk of a rollover statistically showing this is factual. 

All right. Over-correction load distribution. Oh, by the way, going back again, load distribution. You can also find the same thing on your chemical tankers, which is, again, MC-307/DOT-407 and MC-312/DOT-412. The acid tankers. They can be multi-compartmentalized units. So how is that load distributed is very important. And also just a quick side note. On gasoline cargo tank trucks, the one you're looking at right here, the front if it's a multi-compartmentalized unit, the design of the tank truck is almost always going to have the first and the last two compartments are going to be your largest compartments.

That way they could put the most product in those if they only have partial loads, which is going to get more braking power based on the weight over the axles. Equipment design. Again, we talked about equipment design. Equipment design is going to play a factor but even more in-depth, again, I don't want to get into trying to make everybody tank truck specialists here today. That's of course, but equipment design is important in that does the tank truck actually every 60 inches by federal law, under section 180 of Title 49 is required every 60 inch, they either have one of three things for a structural integrity of the tank, either a stiffening ring, a baffle, or a bulkhead. All right.

A bulkhead is going to separate the product. A baffle is going to prevent product surge from going forward. And a stiffening ring is an exterior ring on the tank that you saw if you recall going back on that third slide that we had showing you the 312, 412 tank truck. That's going to provide that cylindrical shape with integrity, structural design integrity as it goes down the road. So equipment design is important in that, you know, how many baffles do we actually have in this tank itself? Are there baffles in the tank? Because baffles will help to keep that tank from surging forward when it comes up to a traffic light. It is definitely something to take a look at. Shifting on a turn, again, it's slosh and surge factors. How we factors. Sharp curves, steep grades, runaways. Again, going back to my experience as a truck driver, back 23, 24 years ago, or 25 years ago, I had a runaway truck up in New Hampshire.

So steep grades, believe me it's a horrifying thing. I had a runaway on a five mile mountain and I don't know how I'm here talking about it today, but I am. So steep grades. Were the proper precautions taken? Was the proper science there, warning the drivers? Was the equipment, you know, making sure that the carriers for the defense attorneys, making sure that the carriers are putting, their customers have learnt lessons from the past. And learning lessons of the past is making sure that not just 20% of the brakes are effective as required by DOT but all the brakes are effective. Making sure that the drivers aren't diming out the front brakes on a tractor because they have the old school thought process. And I'll talk about that briefly later on in inspections. But, you know, these things are gonna be very important in dealing with steep grades.

Soft shoulders. Again, soft shoulders will inevitably cause corrections, hard corrections and hard corrections for inexperienced drivers typically are going to wind up causing a rollover wreck. Hard berms and curbs. That's going to cause a tripping, okay? Are they appropriately placed? Narrow driveways. That's if you're going into...I've actually had one roll over at five miles an hour. And this was in Clark, New Jersey. It was a gasoline tank truck going into a narrow driveway on ice and wound up sliding into the curb. And because it was a partial load, it actually caused the tank to just kind of like creek right over. It wasn't an aggressive and nasty roll over, it just rolled over. We went and drilled holes in it and transferred the gasoline out.

The visibility area in blind turns. Examine the area of where the wreck actually occurred, are there blind turns where this guy or the driver was taking that could have been a causation factor in the wreck itself? Construction zones. Again, MUTCD, construction zones. Make sure that that construction zone was not the fault of your driver in that wreck. Highway designs. All right. How about the highway designs? Again taking a look at, if it's a newer design, newer built highway, it's worthwhile taking a look at. It could be a causation factor, and how we transition. I know some of this stuff is redundant, again, but when you get into highway factors, surge and slosh and so forth, a lot of these things are repetitive.

Positive vehicle maintenance factors. Brake performance. Again, I referred to earlier about the about hills, aggressive hills, and mountains and so forth. You get out Midwestern or you get into West Virginia, Tennessee, Eastern Tennessee and so forth, you've got some pretty aggressive hills there. And brake performance is going to be vital. Making sure that the inside of it, you know, during a level one Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration inspection that that's equivalent to an FMCSA inspection that the inside of the drums are not reached out. That makes a brake ineffective. Is there engine brakes? You know, and we can also get an EOBR data. EOBR data has been...is going to reveal some stuff to us as well, all right, as far as brake performance, when the brakes were applied and so forth.

Suspension damage. Taking a look at the leaf springs. Are we looking at, you know, leaf, cracked leaf springs, broken leaf springs, mains. I'm going to say the main leaf springs and that's an out-of-service violation. If a main leaf spring is broken on a tanker or on a tractor, that will affect brake performance. Higher pressure. Higher pressures will also affect brake performance and also cause the heating up of the tire itself as well as cause a blowout. So we want to make sure we're taking a look at those type issues as well. Low dynamics. We discussed that briefly as well. Ineffective inspection of equipment. What is the inspection rate that they're using? When are they doing inspections? Are they doing them correctly? Etc., etc. There's a lot of...I can't cover it in an hour, but ineffective inspections need to be looked at as well. I'm going to open this up for some questioning here if anybody should have any.

Matt: Sure, Scott. Thank you. Just for clarification. When you referenced TIFA analysis, that's trucks involved in fatal accidents, is that correct?

Scott: That's correct. Yes.

Matt: And where could people find that information? On the DOT site?

Scott: Just Google TIFA or trucks in fatal accidents. That's a very, very well put together document. There's all sort of detailed study on cargo tank truck rollovers which is a very, very good document as well. There's a lot of things that are out there that certainly can aid in the after effect hopefully preventative of issues of tank truck crashes.

Matt: Excellent. We did have a couple of questions submitted. And I would urge all the participants to use the Q&A or chat feature on the right hand side of the screen to submit your questions. Going back to the first couple of slides that you went through, Scott, about the different types of trusts. With regards to the MC-312/DOT 412 which carried acid, is there...you talked about how it was on the inside was protected by rubber. And is there a way that the different acids that are put into that cargo tank truck can eat away that rubber and is there a proper way to maintain the inside of that?

Scott: Well, yeah. What happens is that we're going to get into inspections in a little bit. I'm going to briefly discuss inspections and what's required. But what happens is that there's either fiberglass or rubber lining on the inside of these tank trucks. And a lot of times, these tank trucks are dedicated. They're dedicated to self-jerk, they are dedicated... There's certain carriers that will do nothing but haul certain products with a specific tank truck. If a 312 type carrier, an acid tank truck company, and you take a company like QC, I mean, they haul anything that's liquid, it doesn't matter. They will haul anything that's liquid.

Then there's other companies out there that will haul nothing but acid or nothing but gasoline. Gasoline is very specialized where they have [inaudible 00:38:54] they will transport as a lot of these folks out here. But, again, back to the question is, I digress quite a bit. So I got so much running through my head on this stuff. Yeah, the inside of the tank is going to have either a rubber lining or what we refer to as a boot in the industry, or it's going to have a fiberglass lining. And those mining and these tanks will be washed out in between uses, between picking up different commodities.

So to pick up sulfuric today and they didn't wash out and they went and picked up a load of nitric tomorrow, you basically would have a big, nasty vapor cloud coming out of that tank and you'd have to evacuate an extended area. So what's going to happen is that that tank is going to be required to be washed out at a place like QualaWash or someplace like that where they'll wash it out with spinner jets in it and it gets cleaned out. Now, what happens over time, because today, they haul nitric, tomorrow, they haul sulfuric. The next day, they haul hydrochloric etc. etc. That regardless, the rubber will degrade over time.

So you have a degradation, a breakdown of that rubber. And as it degrades, you'll get a little pinhole in it. And a little pinhole will today allow nitric in, tomorrow hydrochloric, the next day hydrofluoric. And that's going to cause reactions where you can't see. And those exothermic reactions are actually etching away even though there's stainless steel there, they're etching away at the inside of that tank causing that tank thickness to be affected. As that tank thickness becomes affected and becomes compromised, that driver unbeknownst to him is driving down the road with that load of that 36,000, 38,000 pounds of acid. And he goes over a bump and that bump is enough to cause that tank to split right in half. And you'll see a picture of one of those with a tank truck that I did up in New York State that split in half from that very reason.

Matt: Okay, great. Thank you. We do have another question that came into us from Deb who asked, "When you talked about the MC-338 you said that the drivers who operate those trucks are some of the best in the business. What makes them the best in the business? Or how would you distinguish between them and the other truck drivers?" [inaudible 00:41:13]

Scott: I mean, it's typically, a company like... See, I go out and I work with...I'd go out to the Scale House out of Interstate 78, New Jersey every once in a while, about once a month or so. And I work with the state police. And we pull trucks in for inspection and so forth. We see certain companies come through. And, you know, that every time you pull in for an inspection, you can't find anything on them. Their equipment is 100%. Their drivers, their logs, and everything else is 100% because they just run really, really tight shifts. So a company, for example, right here, Air Products, giving credit to them, they run a real tight shift. 

They don't want to be running down a road with a load of liquid oxygen and have that role and have a release. So these guys, you will never see them speeding, you will never see them driving aggressively. They're almost typically always in the right hand lane, unless, they're, you know, moving over for a trooper that's pulling somebody over. It just they seek out these drivers. And when they find them, they keep them, they pay them well, and they hold on to them. Because of the simple fact that they don't want to have this exposure. I mean, I can't remember the last time I heard of a 338 rolling over.

Matt: Okay, great. I don't see any other questions in the queue. If the people in attendance do have questions, please feel free to use the Q&A feature or the chat feature on the right-hand top side to submit them. But, Scott, I think we're good. Moving forward with the second half of the presentation.

Scott: Okay. I will add this to the one question that was about the drivers and so forth. The tank truck industry, quite frankly, employs some of the best drivers in the trucking industry. They're very cautious about who they hire. You know, hey, things happen. I mean, it's as simple as that. It's whether it's equipment design or driver failure and sometimes it could be a combination thereof, it happens. So the tank truck industry though, if you look at the percentages of tanks going down the road from a population aspect, it's the amount of tanks that roll over comparatively speaking to other trucks, it's pretty impressive.

They run a good record. Anyway, okay. I was briefly talking earlier, you see this one right here, this happened to be out in Staten Island, New York on the Staten Island Expressway. And it was hauling an acid. I don't remember whether this was a 312, DOT 312, 412, that picture there. It's a perfect example what I was talking about where you get that etching and it basically snaps in half. That tank there, I actually...I couldn't get into the Island. I had New York police department actually sent the helicopter out Bayonne, New Jersey to pick me up to fly me in for this because they really didn't know what to do with it because there was no leak coming out.

They thought it was empty. But actually the tank gets cold there. It just happens to be two compartmentalized unit and the tank itself, the tanks that held the product didn't breach. It was just the etching on the inside over time that caused that tank to snap in half. And this is a common situation. Oh, let me go back on one other thing real quick, if I may. You folks may or may not be aware of CSA 2010. It's essentially, it's a new metrics of measuring...and they have what they call basics and so forth. I'm not going to get into detail on this at all, because I just want to mention it. It'd be worthwhile if you're taking a look at it, Google it. CSA 2010, as in the year.

Essentially with CSA it's Comprehensive Safety Analysis. It's basically, if you're familiar with SafeStat. SafeStat is kind of old school stuff now. Old school, by the way, about a month, or not even actually. It's in the transition phase now. It's where you're able to now, with SafeStat you can only look at the trucking company and how their safety record is and how they did, how they performed, how they caused...has there been wrecks and how many inspections have they failed? How many out of services do they have? So on and so forth. That was SafeStat then. Now you have CSA 2010. And you're able to now with this look at the driver because the driver has never been part of the equation from SafeStat in the past. It's always been the trucking company, what they did, and so on and so forth. So there's no way really to track the drivers.

This new CSA 2010 as you look at it, and whether it's fatigue or what have you, over-correction or any kind of driving that caused a wreck of a car, which is 75% estimated according to European standards or studies, so you're going to look at that, all that information and make a determination. You know, now going forward, how many times was that particular driver involved in a wreck? And the idea is to get rid of the lousy drivers. Get them out of the industry. And that's all coming about right now. There's a lot of promises being made from Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, but they're doing their best and I think it's gonna be a great program once it actually gets kicked off. And trucking companies, quite frankly, that are into this really understand it, they're looking forward to it as well. 

All right, let's see here, 49 CFR, 184.07, Inspection and Test Intervals. This tells you if you had a situation like this here, you know, you want to take a look at when did we have our tank? Or, you know, if you're a plaintiff, you know, when was that tank inspected? External visual inspection. That's required for all tanks. And what Mo-Yr V. Okay. What that means is the month, the year and V stands for External Visual Inspection. That right there as you see it, Mo-Yr V is actually on the side of the tank truck. It has to be by Federal Law according to 184.07. Internal Visual Inspection, Mo, month, year, and I, it's going to have. So in other words, it will say 10...excuse me, it will say this month now, 909-10I. It shows you that that truck was just inspected from an Internal Visual Inspection this year.

Now, each individual spec tank that we discussed earlier all have different prescriptions as to when did these have to be performed on those specific times. For example, thickness. Thickness test is not required on an MC-3O6/DOT 412 because you're not putting acids and so forth inside that tank, right? Lining inspection. Let's go back up there. Let's look at line instead. Line inspection. You don't have a liner on the inside of a DOT-406/MC-306 tank truck. You don't have a liner. So it would be no need for it to have Mo-Yr L on a gasoline tanker. Leakage test is required on all of them. And if it's done with the EPA, the EPA method 27, it has to indicate it such on the tank as you see right there. Pressure Test, month, year, and it's going to have a P. Thickness test, month, year, and a T, okay?

And, again, each tank truck has a specific timeframe as to years when that test has to be done. And some tests are not required for some tanks. After a wreck Level 1 Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration post-wreck inspection, well, it's going to be...I can tell you it's going to be done by...if there was a fatal involved, it will be done by or serious injuries...it will be done by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration inspector who likely will be a state trooper or a State Highway Patrol. Or even in some cases, it may be a DOT guy that comes out and does it. I like to make sure that...in my particular case, I like to see...I will look at that data and sometimes, some of that data can be challenged. 

You know, and you don't want to inspect any more than if you had a wreck. You don't really want to inspect any more than what was inspected by the Federal Motor guy. Because if you start looking into deeper things, you may have questions answered that you don't want answered, whether you're defense or a plaintiff. Brake chambers. Same type in front. You want to make sure that we're running the same break chambers. If they're not a service violation, you shouldn't have been on the road in the first place. You know, if they dime out the brakes, taking a little dime and covering up the air holes so that the brakes are less affected in the front because there's an old school thought process that if you have brakes on the front axle, it's going to cause your truck to jackknife, which is statistically not true.

Tire depth, 2/32" and 4/32". On the driver, the driver wheels, the steer wheels, it has to be at a minimum of 4/32". On the drive wheels and the tanker wheels it's got to be to 2/32" of an inch. Push rod stroke chamber type, slack adjuster condition and types. These things all need to be looked at. Suspension springs, mains and helper springs. If there's a little hairline crack in the helpers it's not an issue. If it's a main spring that's a problem because that will affect the breaking on the truck itself. Or the inside of the drums, are they greasy? If they greasy that makes the brakes essentially ineffective. Is there enough thickness on the pads, right, on the pad itself, the shoe of the brake? You may see that they're very, very well worn down. Were they replaced in a timely fashion in order to be able to prevent that because that is going to affect the breaking capacity of that truck?

Level one, again, continues. Brake pad and drum, grease thickness. I just mentioned that. Air leaks, audible, or gauged. Sometimes after a wreck it's not really a plausible approach because the truck is wrecked. Although, when I do them, sometimes what I'll do is I'll bring air with me and I'll charge the system up, if I can, if the airlines aren't torn and I'll listen for air leaks. And if we find air leaks, you know, the air leaks could be an indicator that, you know, "Hey, we got a problem here." Steering wheel lash. If the steering wheel is still intact, you know, what is the lash on the steering wheel? In other words, how much play? Does it go beyond what it should have? Lighting systems, directional, clearance, brakes, headlamps.

Is that really going to be...you know, our clearance lamps really going to be a causation factor of a wreck? Chances are, you know, not. But it sometimes can be an indicator, all right? Reflective tape is required. [inaudible 00:52:04] reflective tape on the side of that truck is required and, you know, the 3M type tape. And if it's not, you know, that does create a problem if we had a T-bone. Fifth wheel coupler. How much play is in the fifth wheel? Inspecting beyond that the state police, I mentioned that already, the State Police or the DOT [inaudible 00:52:23] inspector, our Federal Motor inspector.

All right. Vehicle inspection records, these are things that we want to make sure if we're counsel on the defense side and, you know, we want to make sure that our company is doing the right thing. We want to make sure that the vehicle inspection reports, the ROD's is basically your logbooks. Okay? Records of duty status, telling us how long this driver has worked for. You know, and these things are disposed of rather quickly too. Q-files within regulation. Q-files on the driver, all that is physicals and so forth. Post Trip inspections. Post Trips are really important. What did the truck go out the driveway, in what condition? You know if the accusation is from a state trooper that there was grease on the inside of a wheel and we can show the last five inspection reports showing that there was no grease on the inside of that wheel, well, we may have something to work with here.

Public or private sector response. This kind of gets out a little bit of what the main purpose of our topic is, but it is nevertheless, very important to cover. Where did the incident happen? Was Podunk USA or I-5 in L.A. County, California? Because I can tell you I've been out to Podunk when the tank truck is laying on the side loaded with gasoline. And it's a totally different situation. You have volunteer fire departments that really do not understand what they're doing. Out in L.A., on I-5 or here in New Jersey in Morris County or Bergen County, folks have an understanding of what they're doing when they're dealing with a situation like that. 

So this gets more to cross factors. I should have pre-empted that. Proper and effective training of responders, how well these folks train. Do they understand what they're doing? Proper equipment. There is a lot of proper equipment that's needed to respond to a tank truck, and we can look into that stuff at a later point. And I'll give you an example, we had one tank truck years ago, and fortunately, that was an honest one, but we had one tank truck here in New Jersey. This is probably 25 years ago before I really became...you know, the guy in New Jersey for this stuff. 

And it was down east of here down by the city. And there was a tank truck rolled over of gasoline. They didn't have the proper equipment. By the way for 11 years I was lead instructor with the state police on Cargo Tank Truck Emergency Response for New Jersey State Police. So these people have all been trained since then, but back then they weren't. And they didn't have the proper equipment to offload the product from this tank truck. And it was a gasoline tanker. As you recall I told you earlier that a gasoline tank truck is three-sixteenth 7-inch of aluminum. And the tank didn't have a full breach. It was just a small leak out of the dome. 

So they, in their infinite wisdom decided that they were going to right the tanker, in other words, put it back up on its wheels using a wrecker full of product. Now you have no idea what type of integrity, structural integrity damage has been done to that tank truck when it rolled over at 35-40 miles an hour. They decided to start righting it. And as they did, they got about halfway up and the tank completely breached and split in half, all right? They turned around and tried to blame the carrier. Now... Sorry. If that was the case I was working on I would say, you know, "It's not the carrier's fault." But I would have my opinions for that.

Off-Scene support for responders. What kind of support did they have Off-Scene? Contamination/release levels of HazMat. Cost recovery ordinances, reasonableness v. excessive. This is a big issue that has really come about probably about 10 years ago. Especially now it's getting more likes [SP], much more likes than it ever has in the past because of the financial constraints on townships, on counties, etc. They're looking to recoup their money that they spent to respond to that tank truck. And believe me when I tell you, it can be very, very, very expensive. When you have 36 firefighters, you have 12 HazMat people, and it happens 95% of the times is the guy like me that does the work...well, I used to when I used to be out in the field, that goes to work and everybody else is sitting around watching us do it. 

And they send you a bill or they send the carrier a bill for $100,000 for cost recovery. Well, there's a lot of issues on there, the things that they try to recover. For example foam, AFFF foam is very expensive. So they send the carrier a bill. Maybe they used 50 gallons of it, they send him a bill for 300 gallons because it has a shelf life. So the old stuff, "Let's get rid of it and let's replace it with the new stuff." I can't tell you how many times I've seen that.

Invoice auditing of all responding organizations. Public sector responders, private sector responders and wrecker services. That one incident I showed you where that tanker was split in half earlier, the wrecker service sat around and they had...I don't remember how many people. It was about 16 people. They sat around the entire time while we were doing the work and they turned around and they sent the carrier a bill for $85,000. I turned around like, shoot that invoice apart before they sent it out. And they settled, they wound up to settling, for $22,000. I mean, it's robbery. And the picture spoke a million words on that one. Seeing their guys laying underneath trees with hats, you know, sleeping while we're working really, really helped out the situation.

All right. Fire and explosion, what causes the fire and explosion? Well, if you remember nothing else, it's movement creates energy from a static factor, okay? Movement creates energy. I'm not going to get into all the points here. You can read those on your own there. But static will be created by movement of products. So in other words if you have a free falling product, what I mean by that? Do you have a tank truck that gets into a vicious rollover, rolls a couple of times and you have product, gasoline, in the middle of August and it's 95 degrees out and humid, and you had gasoline that's falling from about four feet up where there's a gouge in the tank and it's free falling onto the ground. That's building up static, and it's creating a very, very hazardous situation that needs to be controlled immediately. The first control is AFFF foam. Second control is going to be bonding it. Third control is going to be containment.

And also hoses too. If you're transferring and folks don't realize it, I've got a quick shot, picture on the next screen, but if you're transferring products on a gasoline tank truck that's crashed for a 307 tank truck that's crashed, it's gasoline a final product you're transferring it from point A to point B. In between point A to point B as it's racing through that hose from the pumping system it's building up static. If you do not have the proper grounding and bonding procedures put in place, you will very likely have a static discharge which will cause an ignition of that tank truck. And that's not good. An example right there, the picture in the background. If you have a situation where you've got a tank that's...no, that's a bad example. I don't want to get too complex.

All right. Anyway, fluid transfer, I'm going to drop down to fifth bullet there, fluid transfer through chemical hose creates static. All right. It's got to be bonded. You go to bond those hoses. And if there was an ignition after the fact, say 15 minutes goes by that truck rolled over 15 to 20 minutes goes by and there was no fire as a result of the initial impact. Obviously, there's something that created that. Like either static, or lack of control of static. And if there are people working on that incident whether it be Fire Department, it'd be a HazMat teams or so forth, and there's a fire after the fact, they did not do their job correctly. Static was not controlled the way it should have been controlled.

Free falling liquid phase matter creates static. Again, I mentioned that earlier. Grounding and bonding required for all transfers of liquid phase and gaseous phase matter. Even on gas, in other words gas referring to like liquefied petroleum gas, that's going to create static as well. Back in, when I used to be on the field in response I had a policy, we put a policy in place, that it was required that...I didn't care if you were transferring a tank truck load of water, contaminated water, you were to ground and bond that tank truck because you created a mindset.

Okay. Grounding and bonding, here's a real simple layout of what I'm referring to. Here's a double diaphragm type pump that was transfer... This is the last slide, by the way, folks, so you're just about on time. Double diaphragm pump, there's a tank truck rolled over and you have hoses. You can see a bunch of wires. You see one connected to the tank, one connected to the pump, one connected to the ground. That's grounding and bonding making sure that we are creating an environment that is not going to release static discharge because that little shot on your ear that you used to do when you were a kid on the carpet to your brother, that same static shot right there is enough to light that tank truck, definitely light that tank truck up on fire. All right? Any other questions before we close?

Matt: Yes, we do. We have a question from Kevin, Scott, who asks, "Do the turning requirements for tankers affect the designs of on and off ramps? Can the government claims design immunity in New Jersey if they approve a ramp design without considering that the design creates dangerously tight turning radius? Are the turning requirements for tankers that pronounce that the ramp design would have to be incorporated?"

Scott: Well, as I said, the highways are designed, Federal Highways, more important the interstates. Interstates are designed for all intended traffic. So your off-ramps, and that's why they're reconstructing...and it' the best way that I can answer this, that's why they're reconstructing the ramp down there in Parsippany right now because it obviously did not accommodate tank truck. So, you know, can you make the case? Can you argue the case that, you know, even if they say that it was built to accommodate tank trucks? Well, this obviously wasn't based on historical data of that ramp itself. So going back and looking at historical data for that particular ramp may be helpful. And it's a tough question. It's going to be a state by state question as well. I hope I answered that. It's a tough answer to come up with on a generic basis.

Matt: Okay. I don't see any other questions in the queue. But we'll wrap things up here. And if a couple of questions come in while we're wrapping things up, we will be sure to get Scott to answer them. I want to take this opportunity to thank everybody for coming out today. Thanks Scott. You did a great job with your presentation. And for those who gave up an hour of their time, I know it's a very busy time of the year coming back from all the summer travel and holidays. But I thought the presentation was just great. If you'd like to speak to Scott about a particular case, you can call us here at TASA. Our number (800) 523-2319, or you can send me an email. 

My email address is listed on the screen, mhyde@tasanet.com. As I said at the beginning we will be sending out a link to the archive recording of this webinar. Maybe this afternoon but most likely it will be tomorrow morning. The archived recording as with all of the other TASA webinar archived recordings are available on the TASA Knowledge Center. The website is up on the screen and I'll send that out in a follow up email to everybody who attended.

We are having three other webinars in September. And you will see them listed in the follow up email that you are going to receive in about an hour or so. Scott again, thank you for your time. I thought you did a great job with the presentation. You obviously spent a good amount of time putting it together and have a great deal of experience in this matter. If you have any questions for Scott, you can send them to us now or you can email me and I will make sure that they get to Scott. So, on behalf of Scott Turner and the entire team here at TASA, I thank you for your time. And look forward to seeing at future events.

Scott: Thank you, folks.

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