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Rear-End Collision Involving Dump Truck Kills 2 in Louisa County, VA

A two-vehicle crash on the interstate northwest of Richmond, Virginia (VA), sent one person to the hospital with injuries. Two other people died in the rear-end collision that happened near mile marker 133 on I-64 a little before 11 pm on August 24, 2021.

According to Virginia State Police, an SUV ran into the rear of a dump truck. The two adults in the SUV were pronounced dead at the scene, and the driver of the construction vehicle survived with injuries. News reports contain no details on the nature of those injuries, but officials described them as non-life-threatening.

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State troopers did not publicly speculate on what caused the rear-end collision. The investigation will remain open until more evidence is collected and analyzed.

Many Possible Reasons for a Rear-End Collision

A section of the New York State driver’s manual explains

Four of every 10 crashes involve rear-end collisions, normally because a person is following too closely (tailgating). Leave enough room between your vehicle and the one ahead so you can stop safely if the other vehicle stops suddenly. Brake early and gently when you prepare to stop or turn. It gives drivers behind you plenty of warning that you plan to decrease your speed.

This paragraph neatly sums up the leading reasons drivers run into the back of vehicles in front of them. Broken out into a list and detailed a little further, those reasons are

  • A driver follows too closely, giving themselves too little time and space to slow or stop when the vehicle ahead of them does.
  • A driver slams on their brakes unexpectedly, given the person behind them too little time to react.

Speeding, distraction, fatigue/falling asleep at the wheel, and impairment by alcohol or drugs can raise a driver’s risk for causing a rear-end collision. Conversely, a person who improperly stops in the flow of traffic or parks with too much of their vehicle remaining in the travel lane raises other people’s risks for crashing.

Exactly what happened on I-64 through Louisa County remains unclear. The driver of the SUV could be at fault, or the dump truck operator could have acted negligently and set the stage for the deadly wreck.

Determining which is the case will clarify who has grounds for filing insuring claims. For now, all my Virginia personal injury and wrongful death law firm colleagues can do is extend our heartfelt condolences to the friends and family of the deceased individuals along with our wises that the truck driver make a full and rapid recovery.

A Note on Personal Injuries Suffered While Working

Evidence may show that the dump truck driver was doing their job at the time of the crash. Road work and hauling happen around the clock, after all.

If that is true, the person could have grounds for filing both a workers’ compensation claim and an insurance claim against the policy held by the SUV driver. The insurance claim would constitute a third-party lawsuit, which can be understood in the following terms:

Laws for workers compensation typically don’t allow for a worker or employee to file a personal injury lawsuit against their employer when they’ve suffered work injuries. However, they may utilize the “at-fault” persons clause or entities and file as a third party against them.
   This would be similar to injury cases whereby the injured party is compensated for their medical expenses due to the injury, and compensated for any future medical expenses due to the injury.

A third-party lawsuit is handled separately from workers’ comp, but a personal injury attorney can assist with both.

EJL

Eric K. Washburn
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Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyer Serving Va Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake & all of Virginia
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