Today, March 28, 2011, two vehicles were reportedly struck by a semi-truck tire, killing a motorist traveling in the opposite direction, near the Lockland exit, in the northern Cincinnati area of I-75. Yet another avoidable tragedy, caused by thenegligent maintenance of equipment. A review of the preliminary news reports indicate the tire bounced across the median and into the windshield of a minivan. If this is accurate, it means the tire likely came loose from the lug bolts. A predictable and preventable problem.
When a tire and wheel separate from a tractor-trailer truck, it becomes a loose missile, with no guidance, at highway speeds, in excess of 100 pounds. Anything that it comes in contact with it is going to sustained damage. If it comes in contact with a person, they are going to sustain serious injury or death. Accordingly, it is necessary to take reasonable steps to make sure that all lug nuts are tight, especially after a wheel has been recently removed.
Although the truck driver and his company are ultimately responsible for the condition of the rig, they may have been set up by others upon whom they relied for maintenance. 18 wheelers are so-called for reason. There are 18 wheels and each of them need to be checked and maintained. Tire pressure, secure nuts, signs of tread separation and other factors are all critically important to the safety of the trucker and everyone else on the highway.
Since this crash occurred in the Cincinnati area, an experienced Cincinnati truck accident lawyer should be contacted as soon as possible. The evidence must be preserved. The facts must be investigated to quickly learn why this tire was able to get loose, and who caused it.