In a story that garnered the attention of the national news media, five people died in a truck accident on Interstate 10 that left both sides of the highway closed for hours and the truck involved in the accident consumed in flames. The accident happened near Railto, a California city about an hour east of the Los Angeles area.
According to authorities, the semi involved in the accident without warning veered from its side of the road, over the median and in to oncoming traffic. It then struck at least three vehicles, including one motorcycle, traveling the opposite direction. The truck eventually wound up on its side along the shoulder of the road and, at some point, burst in to flames. Police are still investigating exactly why the truck driver lost control of the vehicle in the first place.
It was not clear whether the truck driver was among those who died in this accident or if there were any non-fatal injuries.
More details about this tragic accident will no doubt come to light as the days go on, but this story serves as a useful reminder now about how important it is for truck drivers, at all times, to be mentally and physically able to keep their vehicles under control. Moreover, it is the responsibility of trucking companies to make sure their vehicles are in safe working order.
As this catastrophic loss shows, a truck that goes out of control while traveling on the road, particularly in the heavy traffic on California’s major highways, can cause enormous damage simply because it is so much larger than the cars around it. When this happens, victims of truck accidents have the right to ask why the driver was not able to control his or her vehicle and, depending on the answer to that question, pursue appropriate compensation from negligent parties.
Source: ABC NEWS, “5 killed as semitrailer plows into cars in fiery crash on California freeway,” Mark Osborne, Feb. 17, 2018.