A Toyota Corolla sedan was rear ended by a Dodge Ram pickup truck towing a flatbed trailer. After the collision, a 6-year-old girl who was in the sedan was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the sedan and a 12-year-old passenger were hospitalized.
Most know that tractor-trailers traveling at highway speeds pose serious risks to motorists. However, we often think that the risks are confined to others on the roadway; yet truck drivers themselves face danger.
On the evening of December 16, 2018, 19-year-old Erick Hernandez left a facility named Frontera Events Venue on Houston Boulevard in his Ford F-150 shortly before 11:00 p.m. Just minutes later, he swerved across three lanes of traffic and crashed head-on into an SUV that Taylor Phillips was driving. The 23-year-old mother was killed. In addition, her 1-year-old son and 48-year-old mother were injured.
Shale oil in the Permian Basin has been a boon to the West Texas economy, and has been largely responsible for the United States becoming one of the top oil producing countries in the world. However, the citizens of West Texas have paid a heavy price, one denominated in lives lost. Their roads have become some of the deadliest in America.
The Permian Basin shale oil boom has brought billions of dollars and numerous high-paying jobs to Texas, and it has brought the United States to the verge of surpassing Russia and Saudi Arabia to become the top oil producer in the world. It has also brought a large demand for trucking, and, with it, a large number of truck accidents.
On Wednesday, August 1, 2018, an 18-wheeler overturned shortly after noon on the Southwest Freeway headed southbound near the exit for SH 288. The vehicle was a HazMat truck, and the crash snarled traffic, backing up nearly all of the freeway. The incident involved just one vehicle, and, thankfully, early reports do not mention any injuries.
On July 17, 2018, Texas jurors awarded a $101 million verdict to Joshua Patterson after his vehicle was struck from behind by a FTS International employee driving a tractor-trailer in September 2013. Due to the collision, Mr. Patterson suffered significant neck and back injuries, which ended his career as a crane operator. Further, the verdict awarded was especially large because the Texas jury found egregious liability on the part of FTS International and their employee truck driver, William Acker. Of the $101 million, nearly $75 million was attributed to punitive damages levied against FTS International.
Alcohol may have contributed to a crash early Sunday morning that killed a woman. The wreck occurred on July 8, 2018, just before 2:00 o'clock a.m. It happened in the northbound lanes of the West Belt at Bellaire.
On the night of January 23, 2017, Thomas "Tommy" Ketterhagen was reported missing by his family in Georgetown, Texas. He was last seen cycling on the shoulder of the road along the 2300 block of Patriot Way. After searching for him all night, his mother found his body and parts of his bicycle in the grass on the side of the road the next morning.
On April 23, 2018 during the early morning rush hour, an 18 wheeler hauling household trash on I-45 burst into flames after swerving to avoid an accident on the highway.