VEGA, Texas – 82-year-old Olin Hood was killed in a multi-vehicle truck accident. According to DPS, a GMC Sierra pickup truck was stopped in the in the outside lane of Interstate 40 near Vega, Texas, when it was struck from behind by an eastbound Peterbilt semi-truck driven by 37-year-old Cain Rangel-Ramirez.
After hitting the Sierra, the Peterbilt continued into the westbound lanes where it was struck by a Freightliner. The force of impact caused the Freightliner to overturn and catch fire. The cab of the Peterbilt dislodged from the truck’s frame and came to rest in westbound traffic.
According to authorities, the driver of the GMC Sierra, Olin Hood of California, was killed in the crash. The driver of the Peterbilt, Cain Rangel-Ramirez of California, was also killed in the crash. The two occupants of the Freightliner were able to escape the engulfed truck and survived the accident.
The families of the injured and killed motorist deserve justice under the law
This is a complicated accident that has undoubtedly left many devastated. While local authorities will conduct an investigation, the families of the deceased, and the injured motorists in the Freightliner, could benefit from an independent investigation. Under Texas law, fault in an accident must be determined by considering the actions of all parties.
The reported facts suggest the two injured motorists occupying the Freightliner are wholly innocent in this crash. However, the actions of the two deceased motorists are not as clear. First, it is not clear why Mr. Hood was stopped in the outside lane. Was traffic backed up or slowing? Was he experiencing a medical emergency? Did his vehicle sustain a mechanical failure that left it disabled? Answers to these questions will provide valuable insight into one component of the crash, why the truck was stopped, and help trained attorneys determine who is ultimately responsible. For instance, if the vehicle was disabled due to a mechanical issue, a repair shop or manufacturer of the truck may be, at least partially, responsible for harm caused by this crash.
Additionally, the actions of the deceased trucker will need to be further investigated. Many truck accident are caused by distraction or fatigue. This accident occurred around 8:30 in the morning, which suggests the stopped truck should have been visible to motorists on the roadway. It is possible the trucker was distracted or fatigued, preventing him from seeing the stopped vehicle, and causing the fatal accident. Truckers must remain alert and attentive at all times to ensure they have sufficient time to act to changing conditions. It is not uncommon for vehicles to find disabled vehicles on roadways, and motorists must remain attentive to avoid crashing into such vehicles. Trained attorneys will need to review the cell phone records, driving logs, and onboard computer to determine what the trucker was doing in the moments leading up to the crash. If it turns out this crash was the result of distracted or fatigued driving, the trucking company must account for the actions of its drivers.
This is a terrible crash that will leave many families mourning and two wholly innocent motorists injured. The facts of the case must be carefully reviewed to determine exactly what happened. While it appears there may be more than one party that bears some degree of fault in this crash, Texas law does not preclude legal action in such cases.
I offer my deepest condolences and pray that all impacted by this crash can find the strength to endure the difficult road ahead.
The Ammons Law Firm is a nationwide personal injury firm focused on catastrophic injuries and wrongful death. Contact the Ammons Law Firm today for a free accident review.
Disclaimer: This post is not legal advice. Information contained in this blog was compiled from third-party sources or is the opinion of the author. Please inform us immediately if false or misleading information is contained in this post.