• February 17, 2023

Rachel Stone Killed in Truck Accident in Jackson County, MO

Jackson County, MO -- February 16, 2023, Rachel Stone was killed following an accident where a tractor-trailer hit her vehicle.

Investigators said that the accident happened at around 6:45 a.m. along US Highway 50 near route 7. According to initial reports, 47-year-old Rachel Stone was in a Chevy Malibu traveling westbound on the highway. From oncoming lanes, investigators believe a tractor-trailer lost control, causing it to go into westbound lanes and hit Stone's vehicle.

Stone sustained fatal injuries due to the crash. No other injuries were reported. Right now, the exact cause of the crash remains unclear. One potential factor mentioned by police is the road apparently being icy at the time. Frankly, though, I doubt this awful event can simply be explained by poor weather conditions.

Rachel Stone Killed in Truck Accident in Jackson County, MO

Any driver has an expectation of adjusting their behavior for hazardous weather. Few are held to a higher standard than a professional commercial truck driver. They should have every expectation there may be ice on the roads in February—let alone in Missouri. That's why it's never too surprising when further investigations show that something like ice was purely coincidental, and it was something like distraction, speeding, fatigue, worn tires, or some other mistake that led to the crash.

That's exactly what happened in a case I handled not too long ago, for example. A trucking company tried to blame a deadly crossover wreck on rainy roads. Knowing that even flimsy excuses need to be addressed, we investigated thoroughly and clearly showed how ridiculous that claim was. Not only was it only a moderate rain, but ECM data showed the truck driver was going too fast for conditions. On top of that, their tires were worn, and there was a good chance the crash would have occurred even in dry conditions.

But under scrutiny, a crash involving weather is almost never solely due to the weather itself but rather a driver's inability to adjust their behavior. That's why, at the very least, a tractor-trailer careening into oncoming traffic raises huge red flags that can't be ignored. I certainly can't say here one way or another what happened or what or who exactly is to blame without seeing the facts first-hand. My experience tells me, though, that there are answers that the victim's loved ones deserve to hear, and they are likely to show this all could have been avoided.


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