A massive Port Allen truck crash involving five vehicles has resulted in one death and four injuries. The accident was one of two recent fatal accidents in Louisiana involving 18-wheelers, which has some people calling for stricter safety regulations for the trucking industry.
Port Allen Truck Crash
April 19, 2017
One person died and four others were injured in the five-vehicle Port Allen truck crash, which involved two 18-wheelers. The accident was set off on Interstate 10 near LA 415 in Port Allen around 5:30 p.m. on April 19, when a big rig failed to slow down enough for traffic congestion and rear-ended a 2006 GMC Sierra. The Sierra then left Interstate 10 and the semi-truck rear-ended a 2004 Chevrolet Impala. The Impala was pushed into the back of an 18-wheeler, crushing the Impala between the two semi-trucks and starting a fire that damaged all three vehicles.
Meanwhile, the Sierra that left Interstate 10 ran into a 2004 F-250.
The driver of the Chevrolet Impala, Ronald Allen, 26, from Alexandria, was declared dead at the scene.
Louisiana State Police are investigating the accident, although they do not believe alcohol was a factor. Interstate 10 was closed in both directions for hours while crews put out the fire and cleared the accident scene. It took until almost 1:00 a.m. for backed-up traffic to clear.
Citizens Respond to Louisiana Truck Crash
Residents who live near the accident scene posted on the WAFB Facebook page about the crash. The station reports it received more than 1,000 comments about the accident, with some being concerned about safety standards in the area. Allison Silvas, one of the people who posted on the page, pointed out that the speed limit should be dropped and warning lights installed to alert drivers that traffic could be stopped.
“I’ve seen this in other towns and a warning would be nice,” Silvas wrote. “Locals know traffic stops, but 70 to 0 in seconds just isn’t going to happen with cars, much less 18-wheelers. Something needs to be done.”
Luling Truck Crash Kills One
April 13, 2017
Earlier in the month, on April 13, a woman was killed and a man suffered serious burns after an 18-wheeler rear-ended a dump truck. The accident happened at around 8:00 a.m. along Interstate 310 south between La. 18 and La. 3127. An 18-wheeler driven by Glen Robichaux Jr. ran into a 2008 Sterling dump truck that was moving at a “very slow” speed. The dump truck driver, Chalanta Brown, died at the scene.
The 18-wheeler was carrying 8,000 gallons of gasoline, which ignited an explosion and fire after the crash. Robichaux was able to escape his truck but had to be airlifted to a burn center at Baton Rouge General Hospital. The dump truck was forced onto its side in the accident.
As with the Port Allen crash, police do not believe alcohol was a factor. Louisiana State Police are investigating the crash.
Following the accident, a portion of I-310 stayed closed for repairs, but traffic congestion was described as “minimal.”
Two Die in I-49 Truck Crash
March 31, 2017
Two people died on March 31 in a single-vehicle accident involving a semi-truck. According to investigators, the 18-wheeler was driving on Interstate 49 near Washington, Louisiana, in the southbound lane at around 3:30 a.m. when the driver lost control. As the vehicle moved to the left, the truck driver overcorrected and the rig rolled and crashed into a guardrail. Neither the driver nor the passenger was using seatbelts at the time of the accident.
Killed in the truck crash were the driver of the 18-wheeler, 83-year-old John Boyd, and his passenger, 36-year-old Charles Hogan.
Truck Accident Attorney
Accidents like the Port Allen truck crash and the other Louisiana crashes are stark reminders of the devastating consequences when passenger vehicles are involved in accidents with 18-wheelers. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), most deaths in large truck crashes are people in passenger vehicles. This is because trucks can be approximately 20 to 25 times heavier than passenger cars, and have higher ground clearance, increasing the risk of a passenger car underriding the truck.
Large trucks also cannot brake as quickly as passenger vehicles and are more difficult to control, particularly if the roads are wet or slippery.
In 2015, 3,852 people died in large truck crashes across the US, according to the IIHS. Of those, 16 percent were occupants of a large truck, while 69 percent were occupants of passenger vehicles. The remaining fatalities included pedestrians and cyclists.