FAYETTE COUNTY, Texas—Three young men died on Jan. 10 when the Toyota Camry they were traveling in crashed into a trailer and caught fire outside La Grange.
Authorities identified the victims as driver Carl Taylor Jr., a 23-year-old Natchitoches resident, back seat passenger Nicholas Flakes, a 20-year-old Campti resident, and front-seat passenger Jordan Lewis, a 17-year-old Natchitoches resident.
The Camry was westbound on SH 71 at about 1:22 p.m. when it approached a westbound 2017 Volvo truck-tractor towing a trailer that stopped in a left turning lane at SH 71 and Bordovsky Road. The Camry crashed into the back of the trailer for unknown reasons and burst into flames, according to local authorities.
The three victims were reportedly burnt beyond recognition and pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. It is unclear whether the truck driver, 38-year-old Ezathullah Atiq of Houston, suffered any injuries.
An investigation into the tragic accident is ongoing, and no additional information has been released.
Commentary on the Fatal Car Accident in Texas
In cases involving semi-trailers and passenger vehicles, the ultimate cause of the injury is often separate from the cause of the accident. The law is clear that drivers must keep a proper lookout and maintain a safe distance between fellow motorists. Without this duty, drivers would be free to create dangerous situations with no consequence. The law is also clear that manufacturers must ensure vehicles are reasonably safe in the event of a foreseeable accident. Without this duty, manufacturers would be free to cut all precautions to pursue profits.
Underriding a semi-trailer is a highly foreseeable accident because of the semi-trailer’s height in relation to the passenger vehicle’s height. When underriding occurs, a car travels under the semi-trailer, leaving the vehicle’s occupants exposed to direct impact. These accidents are often fatal. The trucking industry is aware of this risk, and reasonable measures can be taken to prevent such accidents from occurring. This includes underride guards. Underride guards are the steel bars attached to the bottom of semi-trailers and are designed to prevent underride. A trailer equipped with a faulty underride guard, or is missing underride guard entirely, creates a severe danger to fellow motorists.
This is a very serious crash that has undoubtedly caused great sorrow. Attention should be given to the safety of the trailer and the actions of the semi-driver to ensure the families get the answers they deserve. I extend my deepest condolences to those impacted and hope for their solace during the challenging time ahead.
Disclaimer: All the information in this post is from third-party sources or constitutes my opinion. If you find these posts offensive or identify misleading information, the issue will be corrected. This post is not legal advice and not a solicitation for business.