A commercial truck can weigh anywhere from 17.5-40 tons (35,000-80,000 pounds.) When you compare that to passenger vehicles, which weigh only about 1-3 tons (2,000-6,000 pounds,) it is easy to see how an accident involving a big rig can do massive — and often fatal — damage. If you’re hurt — or a loved one killed — in a commercial truck accident, there may be multiple parties with potential liability, ranging from truck drivers to trucking companies to a host of insurance companies. Complex civil cases like these often are ones where a skilled Oregon truck accident lawyer can be especially helpful.
A Willamette Valley crash was one of the most recent examples of just how devastating the results can be when a trucker operates his vehicle unsafely. Due to the complexities and amount (and severity) of the injuries involved, this case will likely take years to conclude and for families to get closure.
The trucker was traveling on Interstate 5 between Albany and Salem and, according to prosecutors, “had been weaving on and off the road” as he headed northbound. As he approached the Santiam River Rest Area, he allegedly veered onto the east shoulder of the highway and slammed into a Ford Econoline passenger van, crushing it between the trucker’s rig and a parked semi. The Oregonian reported that seven van passengers died. In addition, four more van passengers were transported to a hospital via ambulance.