A crash scene on Route 288 in Chesterfield County, Virginia (VA), turned deadly when a car ran off the road and slammed into a state trooper's cruiser. The fatal secondary collision occurred near the intersection with Lucks Road, shortly after 5 pm on February 15, 2016.
According to news reports, the incident began when a pickup truck and a Volkswagen sedan collided and ended up in the median. The car's driver suffered injuries and was transported to a hospital. The man driving the pickup remained at the scene to speak with police.
While the investigation proceeded, a second car skidded into the median and struck the trooper's vehicle. That set off a chain reaction that ended with vehicles hitting the trooper, a firefighter and passengers from the pickup and Volkswagen. The pickup driver also got hit, and he died from his injuries.
Police later charged the man behind the wheel of the second car with reckless driving because they determined he had had been speeding on icy pavement. It is unclear if other charges such as failing to slow down and move over when approaching emergency responders or causing a death while operating a motor vehicle will be filed.
The dangerous road conditions may have contributed to causing the first collision, as well. When drivers do not reduce their speed, brake gently and leave plenty of space between their own car and others, crashes on ice- and snow-cover roads are practically guaranteed. The need to drive cautiously increases as the number of wrecks grows, as sadly proven by the death of the pickup driver standing beside the road in Chesterfield County. While winter continues, my Virginia wrongful death attorney colleagues and I urge every driver to recognize the dangers posed by icy roads and to act accordingly.