Large trucks can be dangerous to encounter in any type of traffic, but they are especially hazardous on freeways and interstates, where speed, distractions, visibility and weather can play a part in endangering the lives of Georgia residents. Drivers may not realize the extreme danger trucks can pose when they pull over at the side of the road in an emergency or to assist someone else.
Tragically, an accident that occurred this February on Interstate 16 in Bleckley County illustrates this point. According to the Macon Telegraph, two friends of an ambulance driver, who had become stranded at the side of the highway, pulled over to deliver fuel. After pulling away, their vehicle was hit from behind by a big rig, which propelled the smaller car into the ambulance, then under the tractor trailer. The ambulance driver’s friends, who were 21 and 22 years old, were killed. Authorities are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the accident.
Why can pulling over to the freeway shoulder be dangerous? Whether due to fatigue, distraction or low visibility, a driver might not see the vehicle or people on the side of the road and run into them. It is also possible for drivers to misjudge the speed and distance of other vehicles as they pull back into traffic. It is unclear what factors led to the accident described above, but one of these reasons could have been the cause. A truck driver or other motorist who is determined to be at fault for a freeway accident may be held liable for damages.