• August 19, 2022

One Killed in Crash with Semi-Trailer on US-93 in Yavapai County, AZ

Yavapai County, AZ — August 18, 2022, one person died when a Jeep and a tractor-trailer collided on U.S. Highway 93 in Yavapai County.

According to reports the incident happened around 6:45 a.m. on US-93 near mile marker 79, close to Congress. Preliminary investigation suggests a Jeep was headed northwest on the highway when the driver allegedly traveled left of center for unknown reasons.

After entering the oncoming lane it crashed into the trailer of a southeast-bound 18-wheeler that swerved to avoid it. The impact sent the Jeep off the road, where it overturned and rolled.

The Jeep's driver was extricated by fire personnel, but was later pronounced dead. The truck driver was unhurt.

The investigation is ongoing. No further information is currently available.

Commentary on Yavapai County Truck Accident on US-93

Reports suggest the victim crossed left of center and triggered this accident, but it's important to remember that preliminary findings are generally officers' best guesses after a little time at the scene. Many times their first impressions are correct, but I've also seen cases where they missed the mark entirely.

For instance, after a recent Texas truck accident police said the victim crossed the center line and caused the fatal wreck with a big rig, much like the supposed case in Arizona. We looked again on the victim's behalf and found evidence that the truck actually crossed over first. Turns out the driver fell asleep and drifted over, then swerved back when the truck hit the rumble strips. The victim couldn't avoid the truck a second time; police just saw his car in the truck's lane when they arrived and the trucker didn't correct their assumption.

One Killed in Crash with Semi-Trailer on US-93 in Yavapai County, AZ

I want to be clear that I'm not saying that happened in Yavapai County, but even if police are sure the victim crossed over first there's still the question of why. Folks may quickly blame speeding or texting, but driver mistakes aren't the only explanation. Did they have a medical emergency? Did the Jeep blow a tire or malfunction somehow? Was the road wet or in poor condition in that area? Even less-common possibilities like those can't be overlooked--particularly because reports also said that stretch of road is known for being dangerous and has claimed over 20 lives since the start of 2020.

The point here is that things are rarely as clear as a few sentences in the news make them seem. That's why I often suggest that independent experts take a second look and make sure nothing crucial was missed. At the very least, the victim's family deserves to know every effort was made to learn the whole story. Any other steps beyond that would depend on what the story turns out to be.

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