Residents of a nearby county reported seeing a plume of smoke from an explosion that resulted from a crash involving three semi-trucks near the community of Hico, Texas, last Wednesday morning. First responders required the assistance of state authorities and agencies of another county to deal with the heat from the fire that resulted from the explosion. Two of the truck drivers died at the scene, and damage to the road required authorities to shut down that stretch of Highway 281 for the rest of the day.
For reasons that are unknown, a 33-year-old man driving one of the semis northbound crossed over into the southbound lane. This put it in the path of another semi-truck that a 59-year-old man was piloting from the other direction. The first semi struck the second head-on. A 66-year-old man driving a third semi-truck was unable to avoid colliding with the other two despite taking evasive action. The third driver was fortunate to have sustained no injury in the crash that claimed the lives of the two other drivers.
In addition to complicating rescue efforts and requiring responders to call for backup, the heat from the fire resulted in damage to the roadway. Before it was possible to reopen the highway, the Department of Transportation had to send crews out to repair the damage.
While not providing an official cause of the crash, authorities did take the opportunity to remind drivers of the dangers of impairment, distraction and fatigue when behind the wheel of an automobile of any size. Semi-trucks can cause as bad, or worse, damage to smaller vehicles and their occupants when collisions between the two occur. Those who have sustained serious injury or loss in a truck accident may find it worthwhile to contact an attorney.