Elizabeth Alexander Injured in 18-wheeler Accident in Burnet, TX
Burnet, TX -- April 2, 2020, Elizabeth Alexander was injured due to an accident where an 18-wheeler turned into the path of her vehicle.
According to preliminary reports from the Burnet Police Department, the crash happened at around 1:00 p.m. at Polk Street and South Silver.
Authorities reported that 66-year-old Elizabeth Alexander was eastbound on Polk Street at the time in the right-hand lane. Passing the HEB at South Silver, an 18-wheeler traveling eastbound tried to make a right turn from the middle lane, crossing into the path of Alexander's vehicle. The two vehicles then collided.
As a result of the crash, Alexander had non-incapacitating injuries. Reports did not mention anyone else hurt in the crash.
Authorities cited the truck driver for turning from the wrong lane. They did not release additional details.
With details like this, I think some people might be quick to assume that this is all just open-and-shut. Police say the truck driver is at fault, so the woman will get the help she needs no problem. That's rarely how these situations actually work. In reality, trucking companies don't just roll over and take the blame even when the police say they're to blame. Whatever charges a truck driver faces are a completely separate matter. The burden of holding them accountable for someone's injuries falls to the victims and families affected.
Let me give you an example. I had a case not long ago where an 18-wheeler turned directly into the path of a car, killing the other driver. It was clear from police reports that the truck driver screwed up. Instead of owning up to their driver's mistake, however, the trucking company blamed the victim for their own death, saying they were speeding and not wearing a seatbelt. We had to give them physical proof that from the victim's ECM and speedometer (which froze on impact) that clearly countered the claims of the victim speeding. We then had the rescue workers testify that they actually had to cut through the victim's seatbelt to get them out of the wreckage. Only after that diligent process, and countering a few more defenses, did the trucking company take responsibility.
And that's about how all of these situations play out. For victims and families, it's help they desperately need. For trucking companies, it's a numbers game. Even if they can't dodge the bullet, their hope is victims and families won't have the tools or evidence to counter their claims, so they can at least minimize their responsibility. Like I said, the burden of overcoming these challenges falls to victims and families, so they need to take steps to seek out experienced investigators and get the evidence necessary for countering whatever blame-shifting tactic the trucking company has in store.