I recently read about two tragic fatal collision cases, both of which involved circumstances where another vehicle was either disabled and in the lane of travel, or had just entered the lane after being pulled to the side of the road. These two accidents are described as follows:
Moises Guerra of Rancho Cucamonga was in his truck on the 60 freeway transporting a load of dried food. As he approached a semi-truck that was stopped on the side of the freeway, the truck suddenly pulled out in to the freeway directly in front of the Guerra truck. This sudden movement caused the two trucks to hit and Guerra to lose control of his Volvo truck, sending him over the edge of the road. When the truck landed at the bottom of the embankment, the contents of the truck broke loose and fell on the driver covering him with tons of dried food. Unfortunately, Mr. Guerra lost his life in this tragic accident.
The second accident involved a Victor Valley Transit Authority bus transporting passengers to the Fort Irwin, National Training Center, and a semi-truck stopped, without any lights on, in the right lane of travel. The accident occurred when the bus ran into the back of the semi-truck that was not seen until it was too late to avoid the collision. There was no information at the time as to why this truck was stopped, without lights on Fort Irwin Road. Since this accident occurred on Federal land, the Federal Court will have jurisdiction over the resolution of the claim. A Barstow, California resident, Dail Keiper, died and eight others were injured in the bus as a result of the collision.
These two tragic accidents demonstrate the absolute need for using the highways and roadways to do everything they can to avoid placing their vehicles in situations where they can cause impacts or collisions with others using those same roads. Here are three tips for those who have to stop their vehicles on a highway, and three tips for those coming up on a disabled vehicle.
IF YOU MUST STOP YOUR VEHICLE DUE TO AN EMERGENCY:
1. Pull off the road as safely and as far as possible from the lanes of travel.
2. Make sure you engage your hazard lights or some other warning device, so others can see you at a distance.
3. Move away from your vehicle and call for assistance from emergency personnel.
WHEN USING THE HIGHWAYS AND ROADWAYS, REMEMBER THE FOLLOWING:
1. Never assume the road is clear ahead of you, so drive with your focus on possible dangers.
2. When coming upon a disabled vehicle slow and move to another lane away from the car or truck, if possible.
3. Leave ample space between you and the car in front of you so if that car comes upon a disabled vehicle you have time adjust to the changing situation.
If you have had an accident with a disabled vehicle, seek the assistance of a good personal injury lawyer. You can find great legal help at the Inland Empire Law Group for accidents throughout Southern California. Call 909-481-0100 for a no obligation evaluation of your personal injury claim or a wrongful death case for a family member. Keep safe on the roads and highways.