An accident involving two 18-wheelers on Tuesday killed one person, and sent two others to the hospital.
The accident took place on Okeechobee Road when a truck collided with the rear end of another truck. One truck was engulfed in flames, and the driver ended up in the canal where he drowned. It is unknown if he was ejected or trying to escape the fire. The crash also resulted in 37,000 pounds of sugar spilling onto the road, shutting down the highway.
Fatalities are unfortunately common in accidents involving a semi or other big rig. As drivers in South Florida, we are always aware of 18-wheelers, dump trucks, gravel trucks, semi trucks, and other large commercial vehicles on the road. We often witness debris falling off trucks, trucks speeding, tailgating, unsafe lane changes, and other forms of driver negligence. When an accident occurs, the results are often catastrophic for the innocent occupants of the smaller vehicle.
Truck accidents often involve some type of negligence, such as:
- Driver fatigue
- Aggressive driving, such as tailgating or speeding
- Lack of proper maintenance or faulty maintenance of the truck or trailer
- Driving with an unsecured load
- Negligent driving in bad weather conditions
- Negligent passing
Here are certain important things to do after any car accident in Florida - even one apparently resulting only in minor property damage.
- If necessary or appropriate, seek medical care right away. Even if you feel generally all right, but battered or bruised after a truck collision, it is best to get checked out.
- Report the accident to your own insurance company, but do not speak to anyone representing the other driver without legal representation.
- Do not sign any documents at all without legal representation.
- Do not allow your car to be disposed of and, if possible, take photos of all vehicles involved, the roadway, and any visible injuries you have incurred.
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Source: The Miami Herald, "Okeechobee Road Truck crash leaves driver dead, sugar all over road," Oct. 30, 2012.