Last week, there was a chain collision on the Indiana toll road. The accident took place as traffic stopped to allow authorities to remove a disabled vehicle from the shoulder of the road. A tractor trailer driver was not paying attention as he approached the line of stalled vehicles and plowed into the rear of the vehicle ahead of him without slowing.
In all, seven vehicles besides the tractor trailer were involved in the collision, which resulted in eight fatalities.
A Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration report listed the top ten causes of trucking accidents. “Inadequate surveillance,” which is a fancy way of saying not paying not attention, came in at fifth place with 14%. The leading cause was prescription drug use, with 26%.
I tend to think that most accidents are multi-factorial: not paying attention leads to excessive speed under the circumstances, no evasive action, inadequate braking, etc.