Articles Posted in Truck Accidents

Gabriel Koloszar, Paulo Aguilar, and two friends were driving home Labor Day weekend 2002 when the U-Haul trailer they were pulling caused their Ford Explorer to flip and roll off the side of the freeway. Both Koloszar and Aguilar were severely injured in the accident and required multiple surgeries. The two were left with hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills. Koloszar and Aguilar proceeded to sue U-Haul citing that the trailer they had rented had a worn tire that suddenly deflated causing the Explorer to veer left. After months of attempts made by Koloszar and Aguilar’s lawyers to examine the trailer’s parts, U-Haul finally reported that the parts had gone missing. The company stated in court documents that a former employee had stolen the tire and rims. Unfortunately, this was not the first time U-Haul had lost evidence pivotal in a suit against the company.

Over the last 20 years, U-Haul has been sued more than 10,000 times. Out of those suits, the Los Angeles Times found 11 instances where U-Haul had lost, altered, or discarded important evidence. In some cases, U-Haul scrapped or repaired the damaged parts despite court orders to keep the evidence preserved. U-Haul defends its practices stating that it has strengthened its evidence protection policy in recent years; however, they did not provide a copy of that policy when it was requested by the Times.

Koloszar and Aguilar’s lawyers stated that the missing evidence was “convenient.” Citing past cases where the company had lost important evidence, Koloszar and Aguilar’s lawyers asked the Kern County Superior Court Judge Louis P. Etcheverry to punish U-Haul. The Judge cited U-Haul with extreme negligence and said he would impose sanctions before the trial. With the threat of trial sanctions, U-Haul decided to settle with Koloszar and Aguilar one week before trial was to begin.

An elderly couple was killed late Wednesday morning when their vehicle collided with a commercial logging truck. According to the Washington State Patrol, the minivan, driven by an 80 year old man from Olympia, ran a stop sign at the intersection of SR-7 and the Eatonville cutoff. Traveling at around 55 mph, the minivan collided into the truck causing it to lose its 100,000 pound load of logs. According to troopers on the scene, the van was dragged around 70 feet while logs from the truck spilled crushing the van. Witnesses said there was nothing the truck driver could do to avoid the accident. The driver’s 77 year old wife, who was a passenger in the minivan, also died in the accident. The driver of the logging truck was not hurt.

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Four times during the month of May tires have fallen off commercial trucks while driving on Northwest area freeways. A Bothell man was killed May 11th when a semi truck, driving northbound on I-5, lost several of its tires colliding with the victim’s van. On May 13th several cars driving on I-90 near Fall City were hit with wheels lost by another commercial vehicle. The third truck accident happened May 29th when a semi driving on I-90 in Issaquah lost two tires. One of the tires hit a car, causing no injuries. The second tire landed on a roof of a nearby home causing some property damage. Thankfully during the most recent incident, which occurred this past Wednesday, the tires bounced off into the shoulder causing no accidents or injuries. The truck was driving northbound on I-5 near Michigan Street and was in the far right hand lane of the freeway. According to the Washington State Patrol it is not clear why the tires fell off the vehicle.
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Highway 101 was closed for several hours near the Mason-Jefferson County line Monday night when an SUV and a commercial tanker truck collided. The two vehicles exploded into flames killing the driver of the SUV. The victim was later identified as Ronald Alness of Hoodsport. The first responders to the accident stated that the flames were so intense they could not get close to the wreckage. Firefighters were able keep the flames from igniting the tanks on the commercial vehicle.

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Just as the morning commute began, a semi tractor trailer heading westbound on I-90 overturned blocking all lanes of the freeway. The accident occurred at 6:45 a.m. just west of the Mount Baker tunnel. Fortunately, traffic was able to get past the overturned semi by driving on the shoulder of the freeway. Approximately 45 minutes after the truck accident occurred, the Washington State Department of Transportation pushed the semi to the side of the road allowing traffic to pass on several more lanes of the freeway. This accident is currently still under investigation.

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