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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.”

Four people were killed in tragic truck accident on State Route 179 after a reported brake failure

SEDONA, Arizona -- Authorities say four people in a passenger car have died after a fiery crash with a tractor-tractor near Sedona. Authorities are still trying to identify the four people who died. Brake failure is reported to be to blame for this horrible accident in which four people burned to death on Sunday, September 18, 2022, near Sedona, AZ.

Arizona Department of Public Safety reports that the crash occurred about 2:15 p.m. near Interstate 17 and State Route 179. The driver of a tractor-trailer carrying a load of glass stated that he was going south on I-17 when all of a sudden, he realized that his brakes were not working. He exited the interstate at the Sedona exit but could not stop.

His truck was out of control, and the man drove through a stop sign, colliding with a car going north on SR 179. This sent both vehicles down the embankment, with the semi-truck landing on top of the car. Both vehicles then erupted in flames.

While the truck driver was able to escape uninjured, the four people inside the car died at the scene. DPS says that because of the fire’s intensity, investigators are still trying to determine the victims’ identities. Troopers say impairment was not a factor in the crash. An investigation is underway.

This accident was likely caused by poor maintenance or a manufacturing defect

Although the exact details surrounding this accident have not been revealed by Arizona DPS, it is fairly evident that someone was negligent in failing to properly maintain this truck. It is also possible that a defect in manufacturing caused the brake failure. However, whatever the cause may be, multiple innocent lives were taken because of someone’s failure along the line.

Truck drivers and their companies are responsible for making sure their rigs are safe before they travel our public roads and thoroughfares. Failing to inspect, maintain, or repair an 18-wheeler properly is negligence and is often the cause of serious accidents such as this one. On the other hand, there are times when brake failures are caused by factors outside the control of the driver or the company. These cases often are caused by manufacturing defects that leave the brakes unreasonably dangerous for everyday use. Under this scenario, the manufacturer of the brakes, or the brake supplier, may be held liable for the injuries caused by the defective product.

An independent investigation of the company’s maintenance and repair schedule will be needed, as well as the condition of the brakes, before fault can be determined in this case.

I offer my condolences to the families of the deceased and pray they may find the answers they seek during this difficult time.

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