• September 21, 2022

Christopher Mullins Killed in 18-Wheeler Accident on CR 1 in Cherokee County, AL

Cherokee County, AL — September 16, 2022, 47-year-old Christopher Mullins died in a single-vehicle 18-wheeler accident on County Road 1 in Cherokee County.

Authorities say the incident happened around 4:25 a.m. on County 1 near County 672, roughly two miles south of Collinsville. Preliminary investigation suggests only that Mullins was traveling along the roadway when he lost control for unknown reasons. The truck left the travel lanes and overturned on the roadside.

Mullins died at the scene.

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

Christopher Mullins Killed in 18-Wheeler Accident on CR 1 in Cherokee County, AL

Commentary on Christopher Mullins Accident in Cherokee County

I certainly don't to speculate about what happened in this wreck considering how few facts are available right now. As authorities try to find more information, however, I see a specific detail in early reports that I fear may get set aside or ignored. Whenever a truck rolls over like this, one question always springs to mind: Did that really have to be fatal?

People have a tendency to associate the sheer size of a big rig with increased safety, but that isn't necessarily true. At its core a semi-truck is little more than a fiberglass shell stuck on a large metal frame, so while drivers are protected in large part from things like crashes with smaller vehicles they're actually at significant risk when the truck's own weight is used against it in a rollover.

It's a pervasive and well-known issue to truck manufacturers, and yet because there's little pressure to change how they make big rigs they continue to crank out semi-trucks that crumple during a rollover--despite technology existing that should reduce the likelihood of that happening. As a result, many skilled and capable drivers caught in circumstances beyond their control don't make it home to their families. If that could have been stopped in Cherokee County, then it seems only right that someone be held accountable.

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