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Truck Driver Found Not Negligent In Fatal West Virginia Crash

Posted on Jun 15, 2011
A commercial truck driver has been cleared of all blame in a fatal big rig accident on West Virginia 2 that killed a young woman whose car had stalled in the traveling lane.

After an investigation by West Virginia State Police, the flatbed truck driver was not driving recklessly and there was no negligence on the January night in 2010 when he rear-ended the a car driven by 21-year-old Maryann Oakland of Moundsville.

The truck accident took place just minutes after Oakland called local authorities to report that she was having car trouble and was stranded in the right lane of West Virginia 2 near Benwood. The truck did not see Oakland’s car and slammed into the back, killing Oakland instantly. The truck driver leapt from his car and tried to extinguish the car fire, but the flames soon engulfed the vehicle.

The investigation revealed that the truck driver could not see the car due to an overpass and due to the dimness of Oakland’s lights, which several other witnesses noted. In addition, investigators found that the truck driver was not talking on a cell phone or texting at the time of the crash. His toxicology reports for alcohol and drugs also came back clean. The trucker was not able to swerve into the left lane in the moments before the crash because there was a vehicle traveling in the lane.