• September 21, 2022

Gustavo Gomez Killed in Fiery 18-Wheeler Crash off US-75 Overpass in Allen, TX

UPDATE (September 22, 2022): Sources have identified the man killed in this accident as 71-year-old Gustavo Gomez. Gomez was reportedly a contractor hauling mail for the United States Postal Service when his truck fell off US-75.

Allen, TX — September 20, 2022, a truck driver died when a big rig fell off a US-75 overpass onto Stacy Road near the Allen-Fairview border.

Authorities say the incident happened just before 3:00 p.m. on the 2000 block of northbound US-75, close to the Allen Premium Outlets. Preliminary investigation suggests a tractor-trailer was headed north on the freeway when it collided with another vehicle for unknown reasons. After the impact the truck ran off the US-75 overpass and fell onto Stacy Road beneath. It caught fire when it landed and soon became fully engulfed.

The truck's driver died in the accident. No other injuries were reported.

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

Gustavo Gomez Killed in Fiery 18-Wheeler Crash off US-75 Overpass in Allen, TX

Commentary on Gustavo Gomez Accident on US-75 in Allen

I know investigators are still hard at work figuring out the particulars of this accident, and I'm not coming down on them for not having all the dots connected yet. However, that does mean that reports are light on information, including theories about exactly how or why things went the way they did. Many possible explanations, from driver mistakes to environmental factors to vehicle malfunctions, must be considered to ensure the truth is found.

Speaking of considering all the details, one in particular jumps out at me even from the limited information in early reports: The truck reportedly caught fire and became engulfed after landing from its fall off the overpass. Some may see that as a natural consequence of the fall, but it's not a given that fire would follow so it's important to learn exactly why the truck combusted. One possible explanation involves a troublingly-common problem with big rigs: the design and placement of their fuel tanks.

Because of their exposed positions under and at the sides of the truck, there's little protecting those thin metal tanks (and the hundreds of gallons of fuel they can hold) from rupturing during a wreck. Most would agree that an 18-wheeler crash like the one in Allen is bad enough without also becoming a fiery one, yet truck manufacturers have shown little interest in re-evaluating how the tanks are made or whether there's a better way to attach them. Click the link below to read more.

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