One Injured in 18-Wheeler Accident on FM 148 in Crandall, TX
Crandall, TX -- March 30, 2022, a 29-year-old woman was injured in a crash with a commercial truck on Farm to Market Road 148 in Kaufman County.
Authorities say the incident happened around 8:00 a.m. on FM 148 at U.S. Highway 175. Preliminary investigation suggests a Freightliner semi-truck with no trailer was traveling north on FM 148 when the driver reportedly failed to control speed and crashed into the back of a Kia Forte that was stopped at the US-175 intersection.
The Kia driver was found to have sustained a serious concussion after the crash and was treated at an area hospital. The truck driver was unhurt.
No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Truck Accident on FM 148 in Crandall
After reading the basic details in early reports some people may feel there's little else to say. A truck crashed into the victim's car at a stop sign; what else is there to know before concluding the commercial driver is at fault?
That may seem reasonable at a glance, but virtually no commercial truck accident is really that simple. I don't say that out of cynicism or to upset anyone--just to set expectations. I've done this work for decades and I can still count on one hand the companies I've encountered that simply accepted the blame and made things right without a fuss. Instead, the majority of companies bitterly contest responsibility and look for ways to deflect fault elsewhere if they can. Bad roads, mysterious brake failures, or even the victims themselves all become scapegoats for the defense.
Some may not see how the victim could possibly be blamed if she was really just rear-ended at a stop sign, but keep in mind the trucking company can tell a different story unless clear evidence shows indisputably what happened. For instance the company could say the victim braked suddenly ahead of their driver, or started to move forward and then changed her mind and reversed, or any number of other excuses. Are they true? Maybe not, but the proving what really occurred is the victim's problem. The defense's job is just to say "Yeah, but what if...?" enough times that a jury doesn't feel comfortable putting their client at fault anymore.
A crash in Texas not long ago shows how far out of left field some trucking defenses can be and why it's so important to find the objective facts to refute them. I didn't litigate this particular case, but I can think of few clearer warnings about the need for a careful and thorough investigation. In that situation an 18-wheeler veered onto a highway's shoulder and hit a man changing a flat tire. The victim's family rightly felt the truck driver was negligent, and their attorney thought the facts were clear enough that he didn't have to prepare for the insurance company to fight back.
The defense team caught them completely off-guard by claiming the truck lost control due to a faulty wheel manufactured by a foreign company. Because the attorney hadn't gotten a forensic analysis of the truck done to refute that, somehow the absurd argument convinced the jury. They put 100% of the blame on the wheel's manufacturer, letting the trucking company off essentially scot-free. After that the victim's family was left with little more than an empty chair to pursue as they sought answers and accountability.
That crash and the one in Crandall obviously aren't identical, but one thing that's almost certain after virtually every commercial wreck is that victims must anticipate trucking company and insurance defense tactics and be ready to counter them. With a thorough investigation a case can be built based on clear, convincing evidence. That case then helps victims and families overcome obstacles put in their way by the defense. Will that kind of care be taken here?