When Virginia State Police arrived at the scene of a crash in Interstate 81 recently, they found a vehicle smashed into the back of a tractor-trailer. Four people were in the car at the time of the crash, and only one of them survived. The driver of the truck was not injured and remained at the scene to assist authorities in their investigation.
The 18-wheeler was pulled over onto the shoulder of the southbound lanes of the Interstate due to a blown tire. The driver was in the grass off the highway, waiting to fix the flat tire. At the same time, a car traveling south somehow lost control and ended up leaving the left hand side of the road. When the driver attempted to get back onto the highway, he or she overcorrected. The car careened too far to the right and slammed into the back of the semi-truck.
Three of the vehicle's four occupants did not survive the crash. The fourth individual was taken by helicopter to an area hospital. The extent and nature of that person's injuries is not known, nor is his or her current condition. The Virginia State Police called in an accident reconstruction team to conduct the investigation at the scene.
It was not disclosed whether the driver was the survivor of the crash or one of the deceased. Regardless, the families of the victims -- and the injured person if he or she was not the driver -- retain the right to file civil actions against the party or parties deemed responsible. If the driver is deceased, the claims would be made against the driver's estate. If the driver survived, the claims would be made directly against him or her. A claim that is successfully litigated could result in an award of damages for financial losses incurred under these circumstances.
Source: timesdispatch.com, "3 dead after crash in Washington County", , June 4, 2014