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2 Dead & 2 Critical from Interstate 35 Car-Truck Collision in Southern Oklahoma

Posted on Tuesday, January 15th, 2019 at 1:00 am    


2 Dead & 2 Critical from Interstate 35 Car-Truck Collision in Southern Oklahoma

On January 3, wet roads in southern Oklahoma have led to a terrible accident when a 2012 Mitsubishi Galant collided with a tractor-trailer on Interstate 35. Two passengers, Erica Womack (18) and Daniel Ellison (24) were dead while two other passengers, Bryan Gusman (20) and Charles Sulton (21) suffered critical injuries. The driver of the trailer was uninjured. 

The accident happened during the wee hours of the morning between 1:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m. The cause of the collision is still under investigation but according to police report, the wet roads are a huge factor to the accident. 

Also according to reports, the sedan slid on ice and later on crashed into a cable barrier where they were hit by a trailer. 

Due to the bad weather,  this marks the third fatal wreck as posted by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol on their Facebook page. Their post reads: 

“So far during this weather event, OHP has worked 3 fatality wrecks attributed to the weather. One was last night around 5:45 in Pittsburg County. The victim was driving too fast for the snowy road conditions. Their vehicle slid across the center line and was struck by another vehicle. One happened around 1:00 this morning on I-35 in the Turner Falls area. A vehicle struck on ice patch on an overpass causing it to strike the cable barrier and go back into the lane of travel where it was struck by a semi. Two people in the vehicle were killed.”

The post continued, “The other happened around 7:00 this morning just north of Amber/Pocasset on US 81. An elderly gentleman was driving too fast for the conditions and went off the roadway, striking a tree. If you have to get out on the roads, please take it slow and drive carefully.” 

The Facebook post garnered several likes, comments, and shares that mostly highlight on spreading awareness by reminding motorists to be very extra careful on the highways, especially with the recent weather. 

Bad Weather & Wet Roads

Oklahoma is prone to severe weather that occurs any time of the year. Being aware of the weather while traveling the highways in the state could be a literal lifesaver. In fact, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation has compiled a list of safe driving tips to help keep motorists safe at all times. 

During the winter weather, snow and ice can make traveling very challenging hence the number of accidents that have occurred within the first few weeks of the year.

The DOT shared some snow and ice driving tips to keep everybody in check: 

  • Always take it slow in ice or snow. 
  • As much as possible, limit travel during the storm.
  • Keep in mind that bridges and ramps are the first ones to freeze.
  • Always maintain a space between your vehicle and other vehicles.
  • Always anticipate the flow of traffic to avoid sudden actions while behind the wheel. 
  • Snow and ice make stopping distances much longer. 
  • If the vehicle slides, steer in the same direction and take your foot off the gas and brake. 
  • Always drive with your headlights on even during the day. 
  • Never use cruise control while driving on slippery surfaces. 
  • Warm up your vehicle in an enclosed garage before you travel. 

Justice for Victim Deaths

Although it may seem like an accident, the loved ones of the victims may still get justice from what happened by considering hiring a personal injury attorney to help with their case.

Personal injury attorneys can work with the investigators while conducting a careful investigation on their end as well. This will provide more case clarity and add more protection not only to the victims but for their loved ones. 

It is essential to note that one of the most crucial factors in cases like this is timing. Determining the amount of time that passed between the car started losing control and when the semi truck hit it is critical to the case. There are some crashes wherein truck drivers would manipulate the timing to save themselves from further interrogation. Every minute in a crash matters and having the right people to represent you can go a long way in finding others at fault be it through negligence or other action.

Contact the attorneys at Williams Kherkher today for more information. You can call us at (713) 352-7071

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