Concrete / Cement Truck Accidents
Ready mix concrete or cement delivery mixer trucks serve an important role in construction. Without them, it would be vastly more difficult and expensive to build all manner of concrete structures, roads and sidewalks.
When concrete mixer trucks are involved in catastrophic accidents on the roads, however, it is important to understand their unique handling characteristics that present special safety hazards.
Aside from the size, configuration and mechanical operation of the mixer drum and delivery chute, the greatest difference between a concrete mixer truck and other large commercial trucks is the high and constantly shifting center of gravity. With many tons of fluid concrete constantly rotating in the high-mounted mixer drum, the handling characteristics of a concrete mixer truck present unique challenges for drivers.
The National Ready Mix Concrete Association does a superb job of providing both written and video training materials on all aspects of concrete truck operations. Unfortunately, too many concrete companies fail to use those training materials with their drivers.
A point that is clearly covered in training materials, and which has come as a surprise to concrete truck drivers in our cases, is that a concrete mixer truck with a loaded and rotating mixer drum will begin to tip over when it makes a ninety degree turn at just 12 miles per hour. And when making such a turn at 16 miles per hour, the truck will roll over. If a family vehicle is sitting at a red light in the intersection at just the wrong place, the concrete truck will roll over on top of that family vehicle.
And if the contents of the concrete truck spill onto innocent bystanders, they may get serious chemical burns due to the chemical makeup of the concrete that is not known to most people who do not work with it on a regular basis.
Such concrete truck crashes are entirely preventable if the companies just use training materials that are readily available to them in their industry. However, in cases we have handled involving concrete companies in Georgia and neighboring states, we have yet to find one that bothered to provide such basic truck driver training.