Large semi trucks often carry heavy or dangerous cargo across the country. If the operators or drivers of these trucks try to cut corners or take risks in transporting materials, they can put other motorists in serious danger if they cause a truck accident. Because of their size, power and weight, trucks can do significant amounts of damage to property and people in the area if they crash. When a semi-truck driver's negligence results in other drivers having accidents, those drivers may want to consult a qualified attorney to inquire about pursuing damages.
In one recent case in Illinois, a tractor-trailer driver exiting an interstate highway failed to sufficiently reduce his speed and subsequently dumped 40,000 pounds of coal onto other lanes of the interstate.
Drivers on the interstate who were attempting to avoid the coal were involved in a series of car accidents as a result of the truck accident that preceded them. One car sideswiped another in its efforts to avoid the dumped coal. The driver of a car trying to avoid hitting those two cars slammed on his brakes, resulting in two other vehicles colliding with another vehicle.
Three people were injured in the series of accidents. They were taken to area hospitals with nonlife threatening injuries.
The incident occurred at about 6:43 p.m. and resulted in the interstate highway being closed for nearly four hours.
Police charged the driver of the tractor trailer, a 32-year-old St. Louis man, with failure to reduce speed and losing his load of coal. Two of the other drivers were charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.
Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "Truck spills coal on ramp in Illinois, causing six-vehicle crash," Denise Hollinshed, Feb. 9, 2013