• October 19, 2022

One Killed in Crash with 18-Wheeler on I-69 near Bloomington, IL

Bloomington, IN — October 18, 2022, one person died in a morning collision with a tractor-trailer on Interstate 69 near Bloomington.

Authorities say the incident happened around 6:00 a.m. on southbound I-69 near mile marker 111. Preliminary investigation suggests the victim was headed south on the roadway when several deer jumped into the travel lanes. The car crashed and spun out; it's unclear if it hit the deer or crashed while avoiding them.

Moments later a southbound 18-wheeler hit the stopped car in the roadway. The truck driver told investigators the vehicle was facing sideways with no lights on and he couldn't see it before it was too late to stop.

The car's driver was pronounced dead at the scene. No other injuries were reported.

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

Commentary on Truck Accident on I-69 near Bloomington

News reports describe a chain of events that may have happened so quickly that there really was no chance to avoid it. I don't have any specific reason to doubt what they and police say happened, but as always I still think it's best to be thorough and conduct a full investigation--just in case anything went unnoticed at first.

Sunrise that day was at 8:00 a.m., so in the pre-dawn hours a car stopped broadside in the road with its lights off might very well have been almost impossible to see. I do however wonder if the truck driver could see the car's taillights before it hit the deer and spun out. Unless they were a great distance apart or sightlines were blocked, it seems like the chaos of the crash would have been noticeable. If so, it might have been prudent to slow down until they encountered the area where they saw the wreck unfold.

One Killed in Crash with 18-Wheeler on I-69 near Bloomington, IL

To be clear, I'm not accusing the truck driver of anything here--just trying to iron out a potential wrinkle, and there may be others that deserve attention too. It's important to get all the facts and details right to determine whether a fatal accident could or should have been avoided. It's unclear if police plan to exercise that kind of care here, though, so if there's any doubt or confusion about how things went then independent professional investigators might need to take another look. At the very least the victim's loved ones deserve to know they have the whole story.

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