Jason Speegle Killed in Motorcycle Accident on US-96 in Jasper County, TX
Jasper County, TX -- May 20, 2022, motorcyclist Jason Speegle was fatally injured in a crash with a pickup truck on U.S. Highway 96 in Jasper County.
Reports say the incident happened around 10:10 a.m. along US-96 at County Road 482. Preliminary investigation suggests Speegle was riding a Suzuki motorcycle south on the highway when he allegedly tried to pass traffic by entering the center turn lane. When the bike approached CR 482 it collided with a Ford pickup truck that was turning northward from the county road onto the highway.
Speegle sustained critical injuries in the wreck and was taken to a Beaumont hospital where he later died. The Ford driver, 71-year-old Beverly Harrison, was unhurt.
No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Jason Speegle Accident on US-96 in Jasper County
Reports about this accident seem a little confused. Some of them say the pickup truck was in the center lane when the motorcycle hit it, while others suggest the pickup driver turned into the path of the oncoming motorcycle from the adjacent road.
Some may consider that a minor detail, but think about the difference it makes: On one hand a vehicle is clearly in the road ahead and the bike hit it, whereas on the other someone failed to yield to thru-traffic before turning. Their end result might look similar but the law would treat those things quite differently.
This especially matters because the news says investigators called the crash the victim's fault. I don't have special inside information telling me they're wrong, but at the same time if their story isn't even wholly coherent it seems way too soon to be pointing fingers. Moreover, I've done this a long time and I'm keenly aware that investigators and the general public have a bad habit of blaming motorcyclists for crashes even if evidence would have shown they were nothing but a victim.
None of that's meant to say motorcyclists can't make mistakes, or to suggest the other driver in Jasper County was at fault instead. I only mean that it's important to be careful and thorough when investigating just about any crash, and yet as often as not it's clear the people in charge only gave it a cursory go before settling on a "good enough" story and closing the books. That's unfair to the people affected by the accident, and every victim deserves better. Will someone take another look here and straighten the story out, or would the victim's loved ones be better off conducting their own investigation with the help of independent experts?