Two teens were killed in a fatal truck accident on I-40 when the dual wheels of the semi broke free and collided with the Jeep in which the teens were traveling. There were four teens in the Jeep at the time of the truck accident; the driver was in critical condition but the fourth did not suffer serious injuries.
Reports have called the fatal crash a freak accident. The dual wheels on the semi-truck came loose and crossed lanes, crashing into the windshield of the Jeep. The truck was travelling westbound on I-40 while the teens were headed in the opposite direction.
The fatal accident was likely caused by a mechanical malfunction in the semi-truck’s wheel system. These types of malfunctions can typically be blamed on loose lug nuts, overtorquing or a lack of grease and oil that cause the bearings to fail – all problems with the maintenance of the truck itself.
More common in truck accidents involving tire failure is a defectively designed or defectively manufactured tire. These defective tires may suffer tire tread separation while on the highway and can in some instances cause a loss of control of the truck itself. In most instances, the tire remnants will create dangerous debris on the road that can pose a threat to other drivers.
Drivers, owners and operators are all required to fully inspect an 18-wheeler before taking it out on the highway. Visual inspection can help detect potentially failing tires that should be replaced before a tragic accident results. Drivers should be looking for visible signs of wear, damage to the sidewalls of a tire, proper inflation and other signs that may indicate a tire should be replaced for heading out on the road.
Source: KWTX, “Freak Accident Leaves 2 Texas Teens Dead, Third Injured,” June 23, 2013