A man died on Tuesday, August 10, when he drove into the back of a stopped semi-truck hauling rebar. The man was impaled by the rebar, and no signs were shown that he had attempted to stop or swerve out of the way.
The Gruesome Accident
Authorities reported that a man who was killed in a crash in the Deer Park area on Tuesday may have been asleep or in the midst of a medical emergency. At this time, the exact cause of the crash has not been determined.
At around 1:20 a.m. on August 10, a truck driver pulled off onto the shoulder of the SH-225 feeder road to get some sleep. The truck, which was carrying a load of rebar waiting to be delivered, had its lights and hazard lights engaged at the time of the collision.
According to the trucker, he was woken from his sleep at around 3:30 a.m. when something slammed into his truck. When the driver got out to see what had happened, he found a black Infinity rammed into the tail end of the trailer.
“[He] struck the back, partially back of the truck, but mainly the rebar, and basically the rebar went through the windshield and actually impaled the driver, causing him life-threatening injuries,” Harris County Sgt. Dashana Cheek-McNeal told reporters.
The trucker reportedly checked on the victim and found no signs of breathing. After calling 911, the trucker remained on the scene to cooperate with investigators.
Investigators are currently looking into the possibility that the Infinity driver may have been either asleep or ill when he collided with the truck because there were no signs that he tried to avoid it.
“There are no pre-impact skid marks, anything like that, to indicate he maybe lost control or looked up at the last minute or tried to stop… He just appeared to have failed to drive in a single lane,” Sgt. Cheek said.
The identity of the victim has not been released, and may not be known by authorities at this time. He has been described by authorities as a 30- to 40-year-old Hispanic man wearing a work shirt, leading investigators to believe that he was either on the way home or on the way to work when the accident occurred.
Texas Medical Emergency Auto Accidents
In Texas, drivers who experience unexpected and unavoidable medical emergencies while driving are not generally found responsible for any crashes that they cause as a result of those accidents. Thankfully, these types of accidents are relatively rare. Last year, illness was a factor in less than one percent of all car accidents.
Surprisingly, medical emergency accidents aren’t equally common everywhere in Texas: roughly 65% of all illness-related crashes occurred in urban areas last year. This could be due to increased stress caused by traffic conditions, though there may be other contributing causes.
Unfortunately, medical crashes can also be more dangerous than other sorts of crashes. In 2020, just over 2% of all medical emergency crashes result in a fatality, compared to the average rate of less than 1% across all crashes.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident caused by a medical emergency, reach out to the Houston car accident attorneys at Lapeze & Johns for help determining liability.