Joseph and Dongmei Raines Killed in Bowie County, TX Crash with 18-Wheeler
Bowie County, TX — May 29, 2022, 57-year-old Joseph Raines and 56-year-old Dongmei Raines died in a crash with an 18-wheeler in Bowie County.
According to reports the incident happened around 5:00 p.m. on Interstate 30 near mile marker 184, around 15 miles west of New Boston. Preliminary investigation suggests a Kenworth tractor-trailer was stopped in road traffic due to a crash ahead. Raines approached behind the big rig in a Dodge Ram and for unknown reasons didn't stop in time, crashing into the back of the Kenworth's trailer. Reports indicate there were no signs that Raines braked before the collision.
Joseph and Dongmei Raines were fatally injured in the wreck. Neither of the semi-truck's occupants were hurt.
The crash remains under investigation. No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Joseph and Dongmei Raines Accident in Bowie County
Something I talk about a lot on this blog is the misconception that rear-end collisions are always the rear driver's fault. I can't say with certainty what happened in this crash, but experience tells me some folks will almost immediately blame the victim without much extra thought. It's true that investigators often conclude the rear driver did something wrong, but they have to consider other possible factors first.
For instance, what exactly was going on with the 18-wheeler in this crash? Was it stopped as reports suggest or still in motion? Did the truck driver switch lanes abruptly or unsafely into the victim's path? If so, did they signal first? If they didn't switch lanes, did they brake suddenly near traffic or gradually as they approached it? How fast was the victim traveling at the time? Is the roadway itself hazardous or designed poorly in that area? Could the victim have lost control due to a medical emergency? Was there any other traffic around? Did investigators check for sources of evidence like eyewitnesses or the vehicles' Electronic Control Modules?
None of those questions and the many others like them that need attention are meant to complicate things or make any accusations. I read the same reports as everyone else and I'm not pointing fingers after just a few sentences in the news. I'm really just trying to say what I always do: When people are hurt or killed in accidents like this it's important to put in the work and find the clear facts explaining how and why that occurred.
Folks are often tempted to jump to conclusions based on what little reports can say at first, but proper investigation will dig deeper to find the truth. The victims' loved ones deserve as many answers as can be provided. If there are any other steps to take, knowing that will largely depend on what those answers turn out to be.