Blue Lakes, CA — The California Highway Patrol identified Robert Lee Wagner, 45, as the driver of a delivery truck who was killed in an accident on Highway 20 with an 18-wheeler. His son, Mitchell, 15, was riding in the delivery truck and was injured. The accident happened last Wednesday morning (April 3, 2013) at Blue Lakes.
Sources said that Wagner was driving a delivery truck east along Highway 20 at about 5:55 a.m. and an 18-wheeler tanker truck transporting milk was headed west. As the two commercial trucks passed each other along a curve in the road, the 18-wheeler lost control and struck Wagner’s delivery truck.
The collision sent Wagner’s truck off the road, where it crashed into a tree and rolled into Blue Lakes. Wagner was killed immediately in the accident and Mitchell was injured. As their delivery truck floated in the water, EMS workers worked for about 50 minutes to free Mitchell and transport him to a hospital.
The driver of the 18-wheeler, 58-year old Donald Morton, was also injured by the wreck, as his 18-wheeler overturned. The accident is still being investigated and it wasn’t clear if any charges would be filed.
Scene of the Accident
Going by what the news has reported, it looks like this is an accident where one commercial truck driver crashed into another commercial truck. This makes the accident a bit more complex, as this may be treated as a work accident. Since both vehicles involved in the accident were likely owned by larger trucking companies, this could be handled as a work accident if the drivers were on the job when the wreck happened. The main difference between a trucking accident and a work accident, from a legal perspective, is that a work-related accident claim is largely administrative. The workers’ compensation program is typically the avenue by which any claim is pursued. However, the investigation into the accident will still be relevant.