A recent California crash illustrates how dangerous large commercial trucks can be. The smallest mistake by a driver behind the wheel of a large, 18-wheel tractor trailer can cause a truck to crash out of control with potentially serious consequences.
In this truck accident, it only took a sneeze to send a truck crashing across a sidewalk, through a fence, and into a parking lot. While no one was hurt, the series of events shows how this can happen.
After a "sneezing fit" gripped this truck driver, he swerved off the road and smashed into a car. With a smaller vehicle, this first collision probably would have stopped any further damage. But because this was a heavy truck, it plowed past the first car and through a fence. On the other side of the fence, it crashed into a line of parked cars before the driver regained control.
A local newspaper quoted a responding police officer's ominous statement about the accident: "it seemed like one of those things that happens when you're not completely in control of a vehicle."
It is not hard to imagine what would have happened if this sneezing fit had occurred while the driver was trying to navigate a crowded interstate at higher speeds. The same accident would probably have caused a number of serious injuries.
After an accident like this, one big challenge is determining what went wrong. If there had been injuries involved, the trucking company might not have admitted what caused the crash so easily. One common tactic is for truck companies to blame other cars. Whether the accident involved a serious problem like negligent truck maintenance or a relatively unpredictable issue like this sneezing fit, it can require an experienced and careful investigation to uncover the real cause.
Source: Oakland Tribune, "Police: Truck driver sneezes, crashes into 10 cars in lot near San Leandro," Natalie Neysa Alund, Nov. 29, 2012
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