Jerry Shupak Jr. Killed in Truck Accident on I-10 near Luling, TX
Luling, TX — July 1, 2022, 50-year-old Jerry "Skippy" Shupak Jr. died in a crash between commercial trucks on I-10 near Luling in Caldwell County.
According to reports the incident happened around 2:30 a.m. along I-10 near mile marker 632. Preliminary investigation suggests an International semi-truck was towing a trailer in the right lane when the driver activated its hazard lights and pulled toward the improved shoulder.
Behind the International big rig, Shupak was driving a Peterbilt truck with a dump trailer. Reports suggest he failed to control his truck's speed and crashed into the rear of the other 18-wheeler. The Peterbilt veered into the median and overturned, then caught fire.
Shupak was ejected in the crash and died at the scene. The other driver was taken to an area hospital for evaluation.
No further information is available at this time.
Commentary on Jerry Shupak Jr. Accident in Caldwell County
Over the years I've learned that crashes between commercial trucks often turn into a long and high-stakes round of "hot potato" between the trucking companies as each tries to blame the other for the damage done. Most companies won't accept fault without a fight, so while they bicker back and forth about who's responsible victims and families may be stuck in limbo waiting for help.
Some may wonder if there's much chance of that since one driver reportedly rear-ended the other, but it's important to realize there's more investigating to do and other factors to consider. Just as an example, the International truck might have braked suddenly or without warning before moving toward the shoulder. That abrupt slowdown could have meant the rear driver had no way to stop or steer clear, which could mean some of the responsibility for the crash falls on the other driver. Additional factors like low visibility, hazardous roads, and possible malfunctions or defects in the truck must also be accounted for, so it's important not to jump to any conclusions.
I'm not taking sides or saying I know exactly what happened. I'm just explaining that virtually no crash--but especially one involving commercial trucks--is actually simple. Folks may think I'm just being cynical, but these concerns come from plenty of experience helping truck drivers and families whose lives were affected by crashes like this. When it's time to hold someone accountable any notion of teamster brotherhood goes out the window, at least on the corporate and legal levels.
Furthermore, many victims believe their only recourse is through workers' compensation after these accidents so they don't take any action to gather evidence. They may get some help from that program, but on principle the parties responsible for their damages should help them get back on their feet. Holding them accountable requires abundant clear proof, though, so taking the right steps after an accident is vital.