Traumatic trailer crash in roadway kills 4, injures 2 in Florida

Traveling on the highway is one way to get where you’re going fast. In good weather conditions, you may enjoy driving on the highway at high speeds. When conditions aren’t good, though, accidents can happen that otherwise may not.

If you often travel through Palm Beach County and along U.S. 27, you may have heard about an accident that took place on March 17. Four people were killed in the accident, and two other people suffered injuries. The accident happened just before 6:00 a.m., when a tractor-trailer’s trailer came unhitched and was left on the roadway.

It was dark and foggy at the time the accidents began, the report states. Initially, the first driver who came to the trailer slammed into it, unable to stop in time to avoid the collision. Then, another vehicle, a Ford F-150, hit the other side of the trailer.

Following this, another tractor-trailer was unable to stop and hit the first vehicle, a 2008 Ford Focus, causing both vehicles to enter a swamp near the highway. Inside, a 39-year-old woman, 14-year-old girl, 16-year-old boy and 17-year-old boy were all killed. Another person in the vehicle was taken to Delray Medical Center, where it was reported that he was in serious condition. The truck driver was also transported to the hospital with injuries.

What could have caused an accident like this? Most of the time, when trailers are attached, there are multiple safety features to keep them from coming loose. This accident shows that it’s not just one person’s responsibility to be safe on the road; it can be the manufacturer’s responsibility, an employer’s responsibility and the driver’s. The Florida Highway Patrol hasn’t yet said why the trailer came loose, but the police are investigating. The 23-year-old driver of that vehicle had not realized that the trailer was off the vehicle, but he did return to the scene when he discovered it was missing, the news reported.

Source: The Sun-Sentinel, “Four dead, two hurt after trailer detaches on U.S. 27 in Palm Beach County” Adam Sacasa, Mar. 18, 2015