While 18-wheel trucks are essential for both the national and Texas economies and help provide consumers with the goods they require for modern life, there is also no doubt that their presence on the roadways can sometimes pose a hazard to other drivers. The size and unwieldiness of large trucks can contribute to road crashes, either through limiting drivers' sight lines, or the trucks' habit of making unusual maneuvers while turning. Further, the sheer mass of these vehicles can lead to catastrophic results when an accident does occur.
Unfortunately, a recent incident in the Houston area illustrates the potential for tragedy posed by an accident involving a semi-truck. On a rainy morning, an 18-year-old high school student on her way to class encountered an 18-wheeler head-on. The crash resulted in the tragic death of the young woman, though the driver of the truck escaped unscathed.
Local police are still investigating the accident as of this writing, though it is possible that the bad weather was a factor. Authorities were quick to remind the public that drivers of all types of vehicles need to take weather conditions into account while operating those vehicles on Texas roadways.
Tragedies such as this point out the need for safety that all drivers are responsible for while sharing the road. This is especially true of truck drivers, who are professionals, and whose vehicles, by dint of their size and weight, can pose a deadly hazard to others. Further, it is incumbent of owners and other personnel employed by trucking companies to ensure that all safety regulations are followed, including inspections of vehicles and equipment, required testing of drivers and that their employees follow applicable regulations regarding rest and maintaining safe speeds based upon road conditions. If these steps are not followed, both drivers and companies can find themselves held liable for injuries or deaths that may result from truck accidents.
Source: Houston Chronicle, "Weather may have played role in Magnolia student's fatal crash," Ray R. Jordan, Feb. 14, 2017