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Woman Killed in W. VA Truck Crash

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A 21 year-old woman was killed by a truck only moments after calling for help for her disabled vehicle.

The accident occurred in Benwood at approximately 5:30 p.m. Thursday, January 27th, 2011. Maryann Oakland, of Moundsville, died after being struck inside her car by a commercial flatbed truck. She was waiting for help in the travel lane on a southbound W. Virginia (VA) overpass exit when her 1991 Buick was hit. The car then burst into flames. According to State Police, Oakland was killed instantly.

Benwood Police Chief Frank Longwell said that his department had received a call from a stranded motorist on the Bellaire Toll Bridge overpass. However, before officers could respond, the crash occurred, only moments after the call was placed.

West Virginia State Police Sgt. J.A. Laing had this to say in a press release:

"The commercial motor vehicle struck the rear of the victim's vehicle at interstate speeds. The victim's vehicle was destroyed on impact and became engulfed in flames. The victim was killed instantly and pronounced deceased at the scene."

The driver of the truck, who had been hauling equipment on the flatbed, received only minor injuries. The crash is being investigated and a report will be given to the Prosecutor's office for legal review.

Our hearts are saddened by the news of Ms. Oakland's untimely death, and we offer our condolences to her family at this time. It is scary that truck drivers might not be ready to slow down and avoid a disabled vehicle. As professional drivers they should know to expect this situation and take to needed action to just run into the back of a stranded person.

If you feel you have a claim against a VA trucker for an accident, contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible.

IW

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