Jose Osorto-Maldonado, Betty Nichols Injured in I-10 Crash in Orange County, TX
Orange County, TX — July 13, 2022, Jose Osorto-Maldonado and Betty Nichols were injured in a three-vehicle wreck on I-10 in Orange County.
According to reports the incident happened around 3:00 p.m. on I-10 near mile marker 857. Preliminary investigation suggests a Dodge pickup was traveling in the right lane when the driver tried to evade a road hazard by veering into the center lane. During the action the Dodge hit Nichols' BMW SUV, causing it to swerve into an International tractor-trailer driven by Osorto-Maldonado. The big rig then passed through all the highway's travel lanes and hit a concrete barrier. After the impact it caught fire.
Osorto-Maldonado (46) and Nichols (72) were both transported to a Beaumont hospital for treatment of unspecified injuries. The Dodge driver, Eugene Breaux (69), was reportedly unhurt.
The investigation is ongoing. No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Three-Vehicle Crash on I-10 in Orange County
If preliminary reports have their facts straight it sounds like this was a matter of an unfortunately-timed evasive maneuver. The type of road hazard wasn't specified, but that seems like an important detail to clarify. Was it cargo that fell off a vehicle? Water? Spilled oil? Debris from another crash? Some may not see any real need to specify, but if another person was responsible for creating a hazard that needed emergency avoidance then they may have some liability for the wreck that followed.
Questions of accountability aside, though, I often end up calling for careful and thorough investigation after wrecks because every available detail is usually important to ensure everybody's on the same page. When only clear facts tell the story there's much less room for confusion or conflicting points of view about what happened. It's generally best for the truth to be built on objective evidence; if there are any steps beyond that, knowing so will depend on what that evidence reveals.