• June 10, 2022

Alexis Nevaeh Gillis Killed in 18-wheeler Accident in Panhandle, TX

Panhandle, TX -- May 25, 2022, Alexis Nevaeh Gillis was killed due to an accident where her vehicle crashed with an 18-wheeler.

Officials reported that the crash took place at around 12:35 a.m. along US Highway 60 at Highway 207.

According to reports, 19-year-old Alexis Nevaeh Gillis was in a Toyota Corolla traveling eastbound along US 60. At Highway 207, reports say that the Toyota may have gone through a red light, crashing into the trailer of a southbound 18-wheeler.

Gillis sustained fatal injuries due to the crash. Right now, additional details about the accident are unavailable.

Commentary on Alexis Nevaeh Gillis 18-wheeler Accident in Panhandle

As straight-forward as these reports may seem, it's important folks understand just how unreliable preliminary reports can truly be. Now, to be clear up front, I don't know anything more about this crash than what's in these reports. I also have no specific reason to believe these details are wrong. Perhaps authorities were very thorough and left no stone unturned in getting this young lady's family the answers they deserve. But if further investigations showed police missed something important, it wouldn't be the first time.

Alexis Nevaeh Gillis Killed in 18-wheeler Accident in Panhandle, TX

One thing that concerns me with reports like this, for example, is the age of the victim. When people see a teen driver involved in a crash, they tend to assume they were being reckless--speeding, on their phone, doing make-up, etc. While teenagers more commonly cause wrecks, that's no excuse for overlooking other possibilities. Was there a mechanical defect? Did the lights function properly? Was brake failure involved? A medical emergency? If investigators don't at least rule out those factors, who can anyone be sure they're getting the whole story?

Furthermore, these reports don't say anything about where police got their information. If there were plenty of witnesses or video evidence showing what happened, then they may know all there is to know. But I have seen reports like this one where it turned out the investigating officer simply asked the surviving driver what happened, and further investigations showed that driver was just lying.

Again, I am not saying that happened here, but folks tend to read reports like this and just assume they're getting the whole story. For a grieving family whose loved one was suddenly and unnecessarily taken from them, is "good enough" really good enough? I know if I lost my child in a crash, I'd want to know every possible step was taken to find out exactly what happened--even if the answers I got provided nothing more than closure. It remains to be seen if professionals with equal prudence had a chance to look into this awful event.

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