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Deadly Big Rig Crash Near Bakersfield

Casper, Meadows, Schwartz & Cook

Anyone driving south on Highway 99 from the Bay Area earlier this week probably ran into detours near Bakersfield. Wednesday morning three semi tractor trailer trucks were involved in a chain reaction, fiery and deadly crash.

Witnesses said they did not hear any screeching before the trucks collided with each other, jackknifed off the ground then burst into flames. The California Highway Patrol said one truck rear-ended the other two just after midnight on July 25. That driver was killed and pronounced dead on the scene.

Another driver was taken to San Joaquin Community Hospital where he was treated for minor injuries. The third driver was not injured. CHP authorities reported that the trucks were carrying wood, concrete and produce and all three were destroyed in the fire's aftermath.

Northbound lanes of Highway 99 were closed for most of the day Wednesday. Road safety inspections and oil cleanup continued throughout the afternoon. Detours were established.

The sheer weight and size of tractor-trailers means that cars and other vehicles usually lose in accidents involving a big truck. The injuries are usually severe and fatalities are common. If you are involved in a truck accident, it is important to learn about your options. You may be able to obtain compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and other costs of your accident.

In this case, the driver of the truck that rear-ended the other two may have fallen asleep or experienced a medical emergency just before impact. It may benefit his surviving family members to file a wrongful death claim and open an investigation into this tragic accident.

• Our San Francisco truck accident attorneys have handled hundreds of cases like the one discussed in this post.

Source:, "3 Big Rigs Crash; 1 Driver Killed," Kristin Phillips, July 26, 2012