What started as a smaller, three-car crash on Interstate 75 just south of Gainesville, Florida, turned into a fatal catastrophe this weekend. At least 10 people were killed in a massive pileup on the Interstate that involved a series of motor vehicle accidents.
Late on Saturday evening, three cars were involved in a crash. Visibility on the Interstate was greatly affected by the presence of smoke and fog. A tractor-trailer crashed into a car. Then another car crashed into the tractor-trailer. One person was brought to the hospital.
The road where the accident had occurred was then closed for a short period of time. The conditions were too poor to allow cars to use the road. For some reason, the Florida Highway Patrol opened the roads only a few hours later, which led to a series of pileups on that same stretch of highway.
At least seven semi trucks and 12 cars were involved in the huge accident. In addition to the 18 people who were injured, so far there have been 10 reported fatalities. It was reported that when rescue workers arrived on the scene, visibility was incredibly poor. They had to rely on the sounds of victims to locate them among the haze and smoke.
On a different stretch of highway between Orlando and Tampa, a similar accident took place four years ago. More than 70 motor vehicles were involved in that crash that was also caused by fog and heavy smoke.
While this recent crash involves fewer cars, there have been more reported fatalities. The massive pileup has devastated many Florida families who were affected. It is unknown why the road was allowed to be opened if the conditions were so poor. While it is likely that investigations will take place, seriously injured victims may want to consult with a legal professional about what can be done in order to get compensation that may be awarded.
Source: WOFL-TV, "3-vehicle crash preceded fatal mass pileup on I-75," Jan. 30, 2012