The ordinary concept of defensive driving asks that drivers anticipate reasonable risks and potential hazards that they may encounter when behind the wheel. Such risks might include watching out for hazardous road or weather conditions, or being alert for other drivers behaving erratically or who may be speeding.
There are times, however, when ordinary defensive driving may not be enough. A recent fatal truck accident in Texas offers a grim example of how an accident can sometimes defy anyone to anticipate its occurrence.
The accident occurred when a triple-axle truck experienced a tire blowout. The truck driver evidently moved into the left lane of the freeway in an attempt to maintain control over his vehicle. What happened next, however, was perhaps something that no one might have reasonably foreseen.
The truck’s sharp lane change apparently caused a mobile oil rig mounted on its rear to break loose. Once it did, it ended up resting in a position that left it dangling horizontally over the left lane of northbound traffic. A single-occupant car then collided with the oil rig, killing its driver.
It may be too early at this point to assess whether negligence contributed to this fatal accident. Further investigation may ask questions centering on the condition of the oil rig truck’s tires, or how securely the oil rig was mounted on it.
The answers to such questions may determine whether the surviving relatives of the deceased car driver may have a possible claim for wrongful death against the driver of the truck or his employer.
Whether an accident is the result of something predictable or what seems to be a freak event, consultation with an attorney by the victim or his or her surviving relatives can be essential. Speaking with a lawyer is the starting point to assess whether a right to compensation for pain and suffering, property damage or the loss of a loved one is the proper remedy.
Source: NBC Dallas-Fort Worth, “Accident shut down Dallas North Tollway for hours,” June 22, 2014