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“I have been prosecuting serious injury and wrongful death cases against trucking companies, auto makers and tire manufacturers for more than 30 years. Our firm maintains this blog to share information and insight on transportation safety issues that continue to arise on our nation’s highways and roads.”

Kevin Montes fatally injured in accident on State Road 128

ROOSEVELT COUNTY, New Mexico – Kevin F. Montes, 53, passed away on August 11, 2022, after his pickup collided with a semi-truck around 8:10 p.m. on State Road 128 near Jal, New Mexico.

Initial reports state that Montes was traveling eastbound on State Road 128 in his 2019 Ford F-150 pickup truck when his truck crossed over the center line into the opposite lane of traffic. Montes then collided with a semi-truck in the westbound lane.

Police reports suggest alcohol was not a contributing factor to the crash and noted both drivers were wearing seat belts. While Montes was pronounced dead at the scene, the unidentified driver of the semi-truck was treated and released from a local hospital for minor injuries. The semi-truck driver is not facing charges at this time.

No further information about the crash was immediately available.

Thoughts on the fatal semi-truck accident near Jal

In accidents where one vehicle departs its lane unexpectedly and strikes another, it can be easy to assume that the driver was distracted while driving. However, we must carefully examine all facts before jumping to any conclusions, especially in cases involving crashes with semi-trucks. Montes, for example, could have swerved to avoid an animal on the road or, as is sometimes the case, Montes’ steering system or tires could have failed, prohibiting Montes from regaining control of the vehicle.

If Montes exited his lane to avoid an obstacle in the road, this accident might have been simply unavoidable. However, it is equally possible that Montes’ vehicle experienced some mechanical failure, causing Montes to collide with the semi-truck. After all, both drivers were wearing their seatbelts and traveling at a legal rate of speed, so one would typically not expect such a tragic event to occur. On the other hand, mechanical issues, like power steering failure or a sudden blowout, are unpredictable and cause sudden, abrupt lane changes.

When a vehicle’s power steering fails, it may cause the car (or pickup) to quickly veer off-course to one side. In such instances, the steering column locks, and the driver generally cannot control the vehicle before bringing it to a stop. Many steering system failures result from design defects for which the vehicle’s manufacturer is primarily responsible. If Montes’ pickup had a faulty steering system installed or any other defect which led to his untimely death, Montes’ grieving family should have the ability to pursue justice.

Although we have no way of knowing, with any certainty, whether Montes’ pickup truck had a defective part or system before an independent legal investigation is conducted, friends and family should remain open-minded about the accident sequence in this crash, especially when few other causes of the accident seem readily apparent.

Our firm sends our condolences to the grieving families and victims of this accident. Should any wrongdoing be revealed here, we offer comprehensive legal strategies to explore all possible avenues of remedy for those involved in accidents with semi-trucks.

Disclaimer: Information contained in this blog was compiled from third-party sources and has not been independently verified. Please inform us immediately if false or misleading information is contained in this post.

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