Tennessee residents may have heard that on Sep. 26, an accident on Interstate 35 in Oklahoma resulted in the deaths of four college students and several others injured. The wreck occurred when a trucker working for Quickway Transportation, a Tennessee trucking company, crossed over into oncoming traffic lanes. The semi then crashed into the side of a North Central Texas College's softball team bus. Three of the student athletes were pronounced dead at the scene, and another was transported to a nearby hospital where she died from her injuries. Multiple helicopters and 11 ambulances responded to the crash.
The driver of the semi-truck was transported to a hospital and later released. At this time, it is not known what caused the 53-year-old man to cross over into the southbound lanes. The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is currently looking into the accident as a homicide investigation. The National Transportation Safety Board is also performing a safety investigation.
According to the OHP, both the bus driver and semi-truck driver will undergo toxicology tests. The criminal investigation will take several weeks. The initial accident report listed the roads as dry and the weather as clear when the wreck happened. There are currently no charges against the semi-truck driver.
After an accident such as this one, the injured individuals and the family members of the deceased may choose to take legal action in order to receive compensation for damages. If evidence were to show that the defendant was guilty of negligent driving, significant recompense might be awarded.
Before continuing with an action in negligence, it may be necessary to show that the defendant was required to follow a legal obligation known as duty of care. This obligation requires individuals to adhere to a standard of safety when performing actions that may harm another.
Source: CBS News, "Deadly collision involving college softball team's bus", September 27, 2014