• June 02, 2017

Robin Barton Killed in Cleveland County, AR, Car Accident

Cleveland County, AR -- June 1, 2017, Robin Barton was killed following an accident in which his vehicle somehow crashed off the roadway.

The Arkansas State Police reported that the incident took place at around 7:00 p.m. at the intersection of Rye Cutoff Road and Gavin Lane, in the town of Rison.

Preliminary details indicate that 53-year-old Barton was traveling northbound along Rye Cutoff in a 1996 Chevrolet. For reasons which police have not yet determined, the vehicle lost control and ran off the side of the roadway. This caused the vehicle to careen head-on into a tree.

Police officials indicate that Barton died at the scene of the accident. It appears no one else was involved in the accident.

No further details are available at this time.

Map of the Area

Commentary

One of the most difficult things to cope with after these kinds of accidents is the simple lack of information surrounding the crash. It's very common to see these kinds of rural single-vehicle accidents with no witnesses and no obvious factor causing the crash. An issue this lack of information creates is people begin to jump to conclusions of their own about what happened. Unfortunately, these conclusions tend to be that the driver was at fault for the accident. While this could be true, it doesn't help anyone to assume the accident was caused by driver error, especially when there are so many other possible factors involved.

There are plenty of things people don't always consider when reading about these accidents. Tire blowouts, poor road conditions, mechanical failures, even animals in the roadway can cause an accident like this. The problem is that many of these kinds of factors don't always show up in police investigations. After all, most departments simply don't have the experience or tools necessary to detecting some of the more subtle factors.

Take for example the ignition switch defect which put GM at the center of significant controversy. Over 100 people were killed and more injured due to a defect which could cause the vehicle to lose power mid-drive, leaving motorists without power steering, braking systems, and even airbags. The problem is that this factor was incredibly hard to find, and only after several people had the accident looked at by an independent investigator did the issue come to light.

Just imagine how many people read initial reports of these accidents and thought, "I bet the driver was speeding or drunk." Driver error may be a common cause for these kinds of accidents, but to automatically assume that it's the case with no evidence does nothing but further harm those most affected by the crash. This is why I always feel the need to remind people that it's never helpful to make baseless claims about an accident based on preconceived notions.

The best approach is to have the accident examined by an experienced professional independent of the police. This will give victims and their families an ally who will consider any and all factors that could have contributed to the accident. Nothing is considered too unlikely or insignificant to consider, and even the most subtle factors can be brought to light. Whatever the result of these investigations, the point here is that those affected by such a tragic accident deserve nothing less than the full truth of what occurred. Until then, people should focus on what can be done for the loved ones of the victims instead of rushing to be the first to say who's to blame.

--Grossman Law Offices

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