A fatal car accident on a California highway required a 10-hour cleanup on the 10 Freeway in Pomona. One man died in the fiery collision, which ultimately involved one tractor-trailer rig and several other vehicles. That victim was burned beyond recognition in the resulting blaze; as a result, his relatives have not yet been notified because he has not been identified. Authorities say they are unsure at this point whether the man perished in the crash first or died because of the tragic blaze.
Authorities say the scene cleanup was delayed because of hazardous-materials considerations due to fuel leakage.
Official reports say the pileup began at about 8 p.m. on Aug. 19, when a three-vehicle collision caused congested traffic along the freeway. That initial incident only resulted in minor injuries, even though it severely affected the flow of traffic. Just one minute after the initial crash, six other vehicles and the tractor-trailer rig piled up behind that scene. The fiery accident was exacerbated by a rupture to the semi-truck’s fuel tank, which caused the decedent’s vehicle to catch on fire.
Two other occupants of the burning vehicle were able to escape, but it appears that both of them suffered critical injuries in the incident. The two men, ages 21 and 47, were flown by helicopter to nearby medical facilities. In addition, two more victims were also transported by helicopter due to the severity of their injuries, another 47-year-old man and a 46-year-old female. Several other victims in the vehicles suffered a range of injuries, with at least four other people visiting nearby hospitals.
The crash remains under investigation by local law enforcement officers.
The toll that accidents such as these can have on a family is substantial. A loved one’s life can be taken in a blink of an eye. Critical injuries can devastate one’s life, as well, many times, amounting to tens of thousands – if not hundreds of thousands – of dollars in medical bills, temporary to permanent disabilities, loss of wages and other serious problems. When a serious accident is caused by someone else’s negligent or reckless behavior, speaking with an attorney can provide information on options for recovering damages and expenses.
www.dailybulletin.com, “10 Freeway in Pomona reopens following fatal crash” Doug Sanders & Melissa Pinion-Whitt, Aug. 19, 2013