Two men from Massachusetts died in a tractor-trailer crash when their box truck was wedged between two big rigs on I-195 outside of Providence, Rhode Island.
The fatal truck crash happened on Oct. 3, according to the Rhode Island State Police. The two men died at the crash scene.
The crash occurred when a tractor-trailer in front of the box truck had to slow for traffic. Another tractor-trailer that was behind the box truck rear-ended the small truck. It pushed that truck into the rear of the first tractor trailer.
The driver of the first tractor-trailer was not injured. However, the second tractor-trailer driver suffered non-life-threatening injuries.
When a tractor-trailer rear ends a smaller vehicle, the chances are high that the driver and passengers in that vehicle will suffer serious personal injuries or death. This is the case even if the accident happens at a relatively slow speed.
That is why the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety or IIHS is currently petitioning the US government to mandate strong underride guards on the rears of all commercial trucks. Studies indicate that there were 3163 fatal crashes involving tractor-trailers in 2009. In 70% of cases, the deaths involved occupants of smaller vehicles.
Another common cause of these rear end truck crashes is faulty brakes. A recent FMCSA study found that trucks that are involved in rear-end crashes are much more likely to have defective or worn brakes. State and federal regulations require that trucking companies and truck drivers ensure that the brakes on their rigs are in full working order each day.
Many rear-end truck crashes also are caused by simple driver inattention. Distracted driving kills several thousand Americans every year. However, distracted driving in a tractor-trailer can lead to horrific and often fatal injuries. Many truck drivers are distracted by their cell phones or actually fall asleep behind the wheel. Whatever the reason, the result can be a deadly crash.
Sadly, our Virginia personal injury attorneys worked on a terrible tractor-trailer crash in Virginia Beach. Apparently, the truck driver fell asleep and slammed into a small car at a stop light at 40 MPH. Two small children were in the back of the car. Both sustained permanent brain injuries in the tragic accident. This terrible truck crash resulted in a $5.5 million settlement that included a structured annuity which will pay out up to $21 million over many years. This was a good result in a tragic situation, as the children had medical and educational needs for the short and long term.