One driver was hospitalized for his injuries following a traffic accident that shut down the freeway for several hours, according to the California Highway Patrol. The accident involved at least three cars and one tractor-trailer truck. In the aftermath of the accident the jackknifed semi truck blocked three lanes of traffic.

According to local new reports the accident began when a 19-year-old passenger in one of the cars had an anxiety attack. The driver of that car, a Nissan, panicked by the distress of his passenger inadvertently swerved his car to the right, directly into the path of a Mercedes driven by a 59-year-old man. The Nissan and the Mercedes collided and the Nissan caromed toward the center divider as the Mercedes was knocked toward the right shoulder.

Just behind those two vehicles on the freeway was a semi tractor-trailer. That truck jackknifed when the driver jerked the truck to the right to try to avoid the out of control cars in front of him. Once the semi was spread across three lanes another car crashed into the back of the semi.

The injuries to the driver of the Nissan do not appear to be life threatening, though he did suffer a deep gash in his hand. Fortunately no other serious injuries were reported as result of the accident. Often when a big rig is involved in an accident serious injuries or fatalities can result. The sheer size and weight of a semi truck puts smaller vehicles in a vulnerable position whenever they collide.

Source: The Daily Breeze “Big rig crash shuts down 5 Fwy lanes in Commerce” May 31, 2011