James Roberts Jr. Killed in Crossover Accident on US-79 near Milano, TX
Milano, TX -- May 12, 2022, 51-year-old James Roberts Jr. was killed in a head-on crash with a tractor-trailer on U.S. Highway 79 near Milano.
Authorities say the incident happened Thursday along US-79 neat State Highway 36. Preliminary investigation suggests Roberts was driving a Honda Pilot SUV west on the roadway when he drifted over the center line for unknown reasons. After entering the oncoming lane the SUV crashed head-on with a Freightliner semi-truck.
Roberts was pronounced dead at the scene. No other injuries were reported.
No further information is currently available.
Commentary on James Roberts Accident on US-79 near Milano
There isn't much information about what happened here, but a vehicle crossing the center line is obviously quite serious. Aside from rare issues like a tire blowout or medical episode, this is usually the result of someone going too fast and losing control, drifting over after falling asleep, or running off-course while distracted. I can't and won't say any of those happened here, however, as there are still many questions to answer about exactly what occurred and how. It's even possible proving who crossed the center line will be more challenging than people think.
Not long ago, for example, I handled a situation where police got the facts completely wrong about a similar crossover. They blamed the victim for going left of center and crashing with a truck, only for us to look closer and learn the truck driver actually crossed over first when he fell asleep. The victim was only in the opposite lane to escape the truck, whose driver woke up after hitting rumble strips and sharply swerved back onto a collision course with the victim's car.
Circumstances like that may be unusual, but they're far from impossible. That's why effort must be made to ensure experienced independent accident reconstructionists look into things as soon as possible. Getting real answers means ensuring nothing important slips through the cracks.