Santiago Calderon Serrano Killed by 18-Wheeler on Black Diamond in Laredo, TX
UPDATE (December 6, 2022): The victim of this accident has been identified as 61-year-old Santiago Calderon Serrano.
Laredo, TX — November 30, 2022, a man was fatally injured when he was hit and pinned to a concrete barrier by an 18-wheeler in Laredo.
Authorities say the incident happened around 3:15 p.m. on the 1100 block of Black Diamond, near the Colombia Bridge. Preliminary investigation suggests the victim was washing tractor-trailers for a business in the area when a Freightliner big rig, possibly while reversing or starting to U-turn, hit him and pinned him against a nearby concrete barrier.
The victim was taken to an area hospital where he died a short time later.
No further information is available at this time.
People tend to think that most accidents follow a pretty simple pattern: The damage is done, police figure out who if anyone is to blame, and that party accepts responsibility and tries to make things right. However, if decades in my chosen field have taught me anything it's that things are rarely that straightforward--particularly in accidents with commercial trucks.
People don't always realize that a trucking company will fight tooth and nail to dispute, deny, and deflect liability any time they can. Even in this situation where investigators allege the big rig "backed without safety" into a man who just wanted to wash it, I'd expect the driver's employer to suggest something else--the business' layout, another truck in the way, or even the victim himself walking into the truck's path--was to blame for the damage done. Whether or not any of that is actually true, the general aim is to escape liability if at all possible.
That's just another reason why clear evidence derived from careful investigation is always so crucial after any accident. Having the objective facts tell the story means far less "wiggle room" for anyone that would prefer another version. More than that, I think just about anyone would agree that the victim's loved ones at least deserve the truth about their loss. I hope authorities made sure they got it, and helped see some accountability for the damage done.