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Whiteout on I-80 causes 18-vehicle pileup, two deaths

Weather is always a wildcard when driving throughout Pennsylvania. Local roads and Interstate highways can be transformed in seconds from corridors of transportation to smoking wreckage and damaged car parts when a chain reaction crash occurs.

These types of car and truck accidents can happen any time, caused by darkness, congestion, fog, snow or ice. They can be caused by a drunk or drowsy driver or someone distracted by texting or eating in their vehicle. But winter carries the greatest threat, as ice and snow can reduce both visibility and a cars ability to grip the road and its ability to maneuver or stop in time to avoid a car accident.

Such a scenario played out yesterday on Interstate 80, when 18 vehicles become involved in a chain reaction crash in a snow squall that left two motorists dead and injured almost two dozen. The Clarion County Coroner described it as “carnage,” with pieces of broken and damaged semi-truck and cars strewn about the highway.

One person died when they got out of their vehicle and were struck by another vehicle. Crash scenes like this can be incredibly dangerous, with the chaos of vehicles sliding and crashing into already wreaked cars and trucks.

For those involved, a second nightmare can develop after the accident, when they attempt to obtain compensation for the damage to their vehicle and for their own injuries. They are faced with a shifting kaleidoscope of shifting liability with insurance companies often denying coverage, claiming it was another driver’s responsibility.

It is often necessary to obtain your own legal counsel to represent your interests in sorting out the complex web of responsibility and liability and enable you to receive compensation for your losses.

Publicopiniononline.com, “2 dead in 18-vehicle pileup on Pennsylvania highway,” The Associated Press, January 8, 2015

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