Jose Cortina Injured in 18-wheeler Accident in Chambers County, TX
Chambers County, TX -- December 15, 2021, Jose Cortina was injured due to an accident where an 18-wheeler reportedly ran a stop sign.
Authorities said that the crash took place at around 5:30 a.m. along Highway 99 at FM 1405.
Investigators reported that 49-year-old Jose Cortina was on a Harley Davidson traveling along the Highway 99 frontage road. Police say that Cortina and a Ford F-150 were proceeding across FM 1405 from a stop sign. While doing so, a southbound 18-wheeler reportedly going at unsafe speeds and ran through the stop sign. This caused the 18-wheeler to crash into the pickup, then into Cortina's motorcycle.
Cortina sustained reportedly incapacitating injuries due to the crash. Police said it was foggy at the time, and the driver said they couldn't see the stop sign. Right now, no further information is available.
Commentary on Jose Cortina 18-wheeler Accident in Chambers County
If someone looking at a crash like the one described in these reports heard that it happened because a truck driver didn't see a stop in the fog, they'd probably have the same thought I did: That's ridiculous. But whether or not it's ridiculous isn't what victims and families need to concern themselves with. What they should be concerned about is if they have the right evidence and tools to convince others that it's ridiculous while there's a team of professionals trying to convince those same people that it's completely reasonable.
Here's why I say this. A big difference between an inexperienced attorney and someone with 30 years of experience handling commercial vehicle wrecks is the knowledge that any defense, however silly it may seem, can ruin someone's opportunity to get the help they deserve. Weather is a very common target for defense teams, so knowing how to counter such tactics can be crucial.
For example, a family came to me a while back about an 18-wheeler that crossed the center line after losing control on a wet highway. The trucking company refused to take responsibility. They said it was just so hazardous that their driver couldn't possibly have maintained control. Of course we knew this was a flimsy defense, but we took the steps to make sure there was no question.
There were a few key steps we took. One was getting the exact conditions of the road at the time to prove the rain was barely more than a drizzle at the time. Two, we obtained data from the truck which clearly showed that the driver was almost going too fast for dry conditions, let alone wet roads. And finally, investigating the truck itself showed how the truck's tires were worn and could have led to the truck skidding even without the rainy weather. Only after providing a body of evidence like that did the trucking company finally start to cooperate.
I'm not saying that's exactly what's going to happen here, and maybe these reports are all anyone would need to see to come to a reasonable conclusion about who's responsible here. However, I haven't encountered a single commercial truck wreck like this where it seemed worth the risk of letting someone weasel their way out of doing right by the victims and their loved ones. Are steps being taken here to prevent that from happening?