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Fatal crash involving big rig may lead to wrongful death claim


Most California residents understand that drivers must maintain complete focus on the task at hand to help keep everyone in their vehicle and along their path as safe as possible. In order to do so, ideally, drivers should be well-rested, but with the busy schedules most people keep, some may find this challenging. Truck drivers, in particular, struggle at times to fit sufficient sleep into their schedule, since they often make long trips involving many hours of driving each day. However, driver fatigue can easily lead to tragedy, and that may have been what happened in a recent multi-vehicle crash involving a big rig that ended with a fatality. Unfortunately, when police conclude their investigation, the driver may find himself facing a wrongful death lawsuit.

The horrific crash involving 11 vehicles happened late on a recent afternoon on I-5 in Sacramento. According to a spokesperson from the California Highway Patrol’s South Sacramento Office, the incident began when a big rig hauling plywood was traveling south on the highway. The truck driver failed to reduce his speed for slowed traffic ahead, leading to a chain reaction in which several other vehicles were hit from behind. Sadly, a 39-year-old Elk Grove man was killed in the crash, as he was driving one of the cars that was rear-ended.

Reportedly, two other people involved in the incident suffered minor injuries and were taken to local hospitals. The crash is still under investigation, although the CHP has determined that neither alcohol nor drugs were factors. Apparently, the man killed in the crash worked in the Sacramento area and had run for mayor in Elk Grove several years ago.

Since trucks are very large vehicles, when they are involved in a crash of any sort, often the incident ends with one or more fatalities. Although drugs and alcohol have been ruled out as factors, investigators may very well find that some other sort of driver negligence and/or recklessness, such as driver fatigue, caused this young victim’s life to be suddenly cut short. In that case, under California law, the deceased man’s family may wish to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss the possibility of a wrongful death lawsuit.