Jose Eduardo Ramirez Killed in Truck Accident on I-35 near Foremost St in Austin, TX
UPDATE (April 21, 2022): Reports identified the man killed in the accident as 23-year-old Jose Eduardo Ramirez.
Austin, TX -- April 15, 2022, one person was killed in a collision involving an 18-wheeler on southbound Interstate 35 in Austin.
Authorities say the incident happened around 3:00 a.m. on the 9000 block of I-35 near Slaughter Lane. Preliminary investigation suggests the victim was driving a Chevrolet Silverado pickup south on the interstate when he approached a parked Kenworth semi-truck with an attached trailer on the shoulder. Reports say he drifted through the travel lanes and crashed into the rear of the parked semi-trailer for unknown reasons.
Officials confirmed the Chevy driver died at the scene.
The investigation continues. No further information is available at this time.
Commentary on Jose Eduardo Ramirez 18-Wheeler Accident in Austin
Many folks believe that a parked vehicle's operator can't really be responsible if a moving one hits it. That may seem reasonable on its face but it's not actually accurate, which is why it's best to withhold judgment until investigators have a chance to properly evaluate what happened in Austin. It's clearly important to find out why the victim hit the parked truck, but it's also necessary to find out more about the big rig's presence on the shoulder in the first place.
Federal law has some pretty specific ideas about how and why a commercial truck can stop in or near the road. According to the law a commercial driver should only pull over for emergencies like disabling vehicular failures or debilitating medical issues. Moreover, once they stop they're required to put out cones or reflective triangles at 50-foot intervals behind the truck to warn approaching motorists.
I'm not claiming to know exactly how things happened on I-35, and despite how the above may read I'm not making any accusations. Preliminary reports aren't thorough enough to include information about why the truck was on the shoulder or what the driver did after arriving there. I'm just suggesting that further investigation should answer those and several other lingering questions in pursuit of the truth.
Rather than instantly blaming the driver who hit the big rig, it's best to determine what exact role each element (parked truck, victim's loss of control, road conditions, weather, visibility, other vehicles, etc) had in the crash and the resulting tragedy. To be sure the whole story is found, there likely needs to be a thorough examination by an independent accident reconstructionist. At the very least that extra level of scrutiny can help provide more answers to the victim's family.