Five of the Most Terrifying Truck Accidents Ever Captured on Film
Posted on : July 16, 2018
by : Carlos Alvarez Tostado
If you’ve been the involved in a truck accident, you probably know what it’s like to relive the squeal of brakes, crunch of metal and shattering of glass over and over again in your mind. And you’ve asked yourself the same questions over and over. What would have happened if you’d just turned left? Why didn’t traffic slow down in the rain? And why haven’t you gotten new wiper blades, or brakes, or tires yet? The doubts and terrifying flashbacks can torment you. If that accident involved a truck, your worries and anxiety are probably through the roof.
And it’s no surprise that truck accidents stick with us, whether we’ve suffered an injury or not. From San Diego to Bangor, our roads, in general, are a dangerous place to be, and we all have experience with accidents. According to a recent report, the car insurance industry has examined the likelihood of living an accident-free life. Researchers found that there’s no such thing: the average driver files a claim about every 17.9 years. Some of those are serious. As reported last year in The New York Times, traffic deaths have risen more than five percent each year since 2015. That’s the largest two-year increase in more than 50 years. This, despite impressive innovations in automotive technology, like navigation systems even in cars that most families can afford.
But maybe you don’t have it so bad. A quick Googling of “worst truck accidents” yields almost half a million results, with video compilations of accidents that leave you asking things like ‘”how fast must they have been going??” and “how many trucks were involved in that pile-up? and “is that all that’s left of the semi??”
Catastrophic Truck Accidents
Many contributing factors conspire to create the perfect environment and opportunity car and truck accidents including driver negligence and the state of the roads. Weather, driver alertness, traffic and driving conditions conspire to make car and truck travel unpredictable and, at times, treacherous.
Since the birth of the internet, traffic accidents have made prime viewing. But it’s not all for stomach-twisting thrills. They tend to fall into categories of common traffic hazards—and may well be cautionary tales for viewers.
Acts of Nature
Heavy rain, snow, sleet, flooding, even tornados and earthquakes can create conditions that are challenging to navigate. Every season from spring floods to fall fires, cable news is full of stories of heroic rescues in dangerous situations. Sometimes, it may be best to stay in—and leave your car or truck in the garage.
California, from San Francisco to San Diego, seems to get every kind of weather, making its roads a prime spot for accidents.
Here, flash floods fill the streets of Southern California. An SUV gets swept away in swift moving water, a casualty of flooding.
Massive Chain-Reaction Pile-Ups
With millions of drivers on the road, Americans take their lives—and their cars and trucks—into their hands every day. But one day—Valentine’s Day as luck would have it—turned out to be particularly dangerous for Pennsylvania drivers in 2014. That day, in a massive chain-reaction pile-up, more than one hundred cars, trucks and semis (including an 18-wheeler) came to a crashing halt causing a massive pile-up that sent 17 people to the hospital and closed the highway for hours.
These kinds of chain-reaction crashes can be devastating to vehicles and bank accounts. Sorting out fault in a chain-reaction crash is notoriously complicated.
The State of our Roads
It’s no secret that the national infrastructure is in trouble from San Diego to Boston. In fact, the American Society of Civil Engineers gives American roads a D+ on its “Infrastructure Report Card”. And sometimes the problems run deeper than potholes.
That means scenes like this one are shockingly common. Soft or eroding soil plus flooding and aging asphalt equals big problems that may just appear out of the blue.
In early 2017, a sinkhole opened up beneath a semi truck in Georgia, leaving the road, and truck, in trouble.
Some of the deadliest crashes on the highways aren’t due to the vehicles themselves, but rather from the fuel the truck is running on. While trucks vary in size, their fuel tanks carry, on average about 100 to as many as 300 gallons of fuel.
When that fuel is present in an accident, with hot brakes and tires or scraping metal that throws sparks, it’s a recipe for disaster. In this 2017 California crash, a tanker and tow truck set off a fiery—and deadly—accident.
When trucks see a lot of miles, their tires get a ton of wear. But inspections and driver responsibility usually mean that this damage isn’t a big factor in tire safety. Instead, blowouts are usually the result of an overloaded truck and damage to the tire that causes rapid air loss.
Blowouts can send rubber flying, a truck veering into oncoming traffic, other cars, or lane barriers. Blowouts are notoriously deadly—for both the driver and for cars around him. Not only do other drivers react by swerving and panicking, but whatever load the truck may be carrying can spill all over the freeway.
That’s exactly what happens in this video.
These shocking accidents all have one thing in common: they happen fast. Drivers barely have enough time to react much less prepare. These videos are a good reminder that all drivers need to be aware and cautious around big trucks. Because an accident involving 40 tons of metal, glass and fuel can be a life-changing disaster.
If you are involved in an accident with a truck, it’s important to seek legal advice.