Durham Police say a driver traveling east in the westbound lanes of Interstate 40 was the cause of a crash on Wednesday morning. The wrong-way crash occurred at approximately 1 a.m. when a 25-year-old Raleigh man, driving a Toyota RAV4 was driving in the wrong direction and slammed head-on into an 18-wheeler Fed Ex truck being driven by a 68-year-old Pinetops man.
The driver of the Toyota was seriously injured in the crash and taken to a local hospital. The FedEx driver did not appear to be injured. No charges have been filed at this time; however, police say they are still investigating the accident.
Wrong Way Crashes
Thankfully, each of these drivers survived the crash. Unfortunately, in far too many wrong-way crashes, victims often suffer serious or severe injuries and many of those victims do not survive. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) estimates that there are approximately 300 people killed each year in wrong-way crashes.
Most of these types of crashes end up as head-on collisions and that type of impact accounts for the high number of victims. One study found that out of 100 wrong-way crashes, 62 percent resulted in at least one person killed or seriously injured, compared to 100 other types of highway crashes, which had a 44 percent rate of deaths or injuries.
Studies of wrong-way crashes have also concluded that the at-fault driver is more likely to be between the ages of 16 and 34. The highest numbers of offenders are male. In the majority of wrong-way crashes, the at-fault driver is driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs in more than 60 percent of accidents.
There also appears to be a pattern regarding the time day wrong-way crashes happen. They are five times more likely to occur in the early morning hours, which also coincides with drivers leaving clubs and bars after drinking.
Some of the most common places/scenarios of where and how wrong-way crashes occur include drivers entering a highway on the exit ramp, drivers going down one-way streets, drivers taking left-side exit ramps, and drivers taking U-turns.
Contact a North Carolina Injury Attorney
If you have been injured in a wrong-way crash caused by another driver – or any time of vehicle accident – contact a North Carolina car accident attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have against the other driver. Having the assurance that your legal representation is experienced, skilled, and knowledgeable is crucial. At Shapiro & Appleton, all of our North Carolina car crash attorneys have successfully represented many car accident victims in getting the financial compensation they deserved for their injuries and are happy to meet and discuss how we may be able to help you.