Truck Driver Charged in Fatal I-81 Crash in Virginia

A tractor trailer crash on I-81 in Virginia has resulted in charges against the truck driver. 

The Aug. 18 truck crash in Montgomery County, Virginia happened when a Freightliner tractor trailer was going north in the right lane of I-81 at MM 127. At that time, traffic started to back up. The truck driver failed to slow down.


It slammed into a 2008 Chrysler Sebring, switched lanes and then hit a 2013 Nissan Altima which was stopped in traffic. The truck pushed the Nissan into the back of a box truck.

The truck driver was charged with reckless driving, and he may face other charges.

The Chrysler driver was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. However, the passenger in the Nissan passed away at the scene.

Our View

As a tractor trailer personal injury attorney in Virginia, I want people to know that distracted driving is a serious problem that kills people every year. The NHTSA states that 3477 people died due to distracted driving in 2015.

Distracted driving is defined as any type of activity that diverts one’s attention from driving. These distractions include changing the radio, texting or talking on a cell phone, eating and drinking and chatting with passengers.

Without a doubt, the most frightening type of distraction today is texting. Did you know that texting and driving cause the average person to take their eyes off the road for a full five seconds? At 55 miles per hour, this is like driving an entire football field with your eyes closed.

It is impossible to drive in a safe manner unless you have your attention fully on the road in front of you.

For truck drivers with a commercial driver’s license, distracted driving is even more dangerous. A fully loaded big rig can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. One can imagine what happens when a vehicle that heavy slams into a 4,000 car. It leads to very serious and often fatal injuries.

Truck drivers must be aware that it is illegal for them to text and drive and to talk on a cell phone, unless it is a hands-free device.

Our tractor trailer accident attorneys often have worked personal injury and wrongful death cases where truck drivers have seriously hurt or killed innocent people. If you have lost a loved one in a truck crash, please know that you do have legal options. If your personal injury attorney can prove that the truck driver or trucking company was negligent, you could receive financial compensation for the loss of your loved one.