Large commercial vehicles are a common sight on highways in Tennessee and across the country. Their size and high rate of speed mean that the occupants of smaller vehicles will often suffer serious injuries or worse in collisions. News headlines, both locally and nationally, frequently illustrate the devastating results that can occur from a truck accident.

One of these crashes happened in late June in Chattanooga. According to authorities, construction was occurring at night on a stretch of Interstate 75. Traffic had stopped just before an area where the lanes tapered down to make room for the construction zone. An approaching tractor trailer was unable to slow down in time, and crashed into eight vehicles in front of it. Six people were killed in the accident, including two children, and six additional victims were hospitalized.

Police said the truck driver had been traveling from Florida, and he is currently under investigation. The accident was reportedly the worst fatality crash in Chattanooga in 10 years. Authorities were unsure whether the accident was a result of speeding, distraction or other factors.

Although it is not known if tailgating caused the crash, this tragedy shows how it can be all too easy for a truck that is following too closely to plow into vehicles in front. Large trucks, especially those pulling multiple trailers, take a much longer time to slow down than smaller vehicles. Truck drivers can have difficulty slowing in time to avoid crashing into traffic that has slowed or stopped in a work zone. Negligent truck drivers may be held liable for an accident that caused serious injuries or deaths.


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