LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala.—Daniel Demar Townsend, a 31-year-old man from Athens, Ala., lost his life April 20 after his vehicle crashed into a stalled RV on the side of Interstate 65.
Local authorities said the 2003 Chevy Silverado Townsend was driving hit the back of the RV, then landed in the northbound lanes of the interstate where it was struck by a 2019 Freightliner tractor-trailer.
Officials pronounced Townsend dead at the scene of the crash. The RV and 18-wheeler drivers did not suffer injuries.
An investigation into the crash is ongoing. No additional information has been released.
Commentary on the fatal RV accident in Alabama
I am saddened to learn of the untimely passing of Mr. Daniel Townsend and offer my condolences to his family. Losing a loved one in a tragic crash is one of the most difficult challenges of this life and will have a meaningful impact on countless lives. I pray the Townsend family can find peace and solace in the months and years to come.
Folks will look at this accident and conclude Mr. Townsend tragically is fully responsible for his passing without considering the actions of the other two drivers. However, this conclusion is premature, and many factors must be investigated before determining fault.
We know currently that the RV was parked on the road’s shoulder at the time of the crash. This information doesn’t mean much without details on how the RV was parked, the safety precautions the driver took to alert other drivers of the RV’s presence, and why the RV was disabled in the first place. Without this information, we cannot determine if the RV driver was acting reasonably at the time of the crash. Additional facts on the semi-driver are equally important. For instance, what was the driver doing at the collision? Was the driver distracted? Did this prevent the driver from taking evasive action to avoid Mr. Townsend?
I do not mean to point blame where blame isn’t due. However, when we are dealing with the loss of a man’s life and the ramifications that will cause in the lives of his family, the exact cause of the crash must be brought forth. The family deserves justice, answers, and peace as they move forward.
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