States that routinely get snow and ice for several months out of the year create a huge risk for drivers on the local roads. Drivers cannot maintain control of their vehicles once a car or truck hits a patch of ice and begins to slide.
Ice and snow on the roads led to a number of overturned semi trucks on highways in Minneapolis and throughout the state of Minnesota.
Freezing rain causes mayhem all over the state’s roads
Minnesota State Patrol estimated that there were over 400 collisions on the roads during a Saturday morning and afternoon with severe weather conditions. Among the damage were 13 jackknifed semi trucks, 43 injuries and 2 fatalities. Many other cars on the roads also spun out and collided with each other causing minor damage.
A number of slippery roads in the area were temporarily closed while police and emergency crews responded to the accidents and attempted to prevent further harm. All bus service from Metro Transit was suspended in several areas until the road conditions improved.
One accident involved a man who was driving a truck to transport passengers for the company Uber. He said that when he went down a slope, he realized his vehicle would not stop due to the ice on the roads. The vehicle went forward until it hit a pole and sustained severe damage, but the driver was uninjured.
Another accident involved an elderly man driving on Interstate 35 eastbound near Lino Lakes. His car slipped off the road and into a ditch. He was not wearing a seatbelt and died from the impact.
According to local authorities, an early morning period of freezing rain was responsible for many of the problems on the roads. When a small amount of rain hits the roads in very cold temperatures, it can create black ice that is invisible to the human eye. People were advised to stay home until the weather changes.
Road conditions improved as the weather became warmer later in the day, but more freezing rain was expected to hit the state in the following days and lead to similar problems.
Can a truck driver still be at fault when there is ice on the roads?
While this kind of inclement weather may seem like a mitigating factor that would take blame away from a driver involved in an accident, this is not always the case. Regardless of the weather conditions, drivers are all held to a certain standard of care while on the roads. They can be found negligent and must pay damages to the plaintiff if they breach this duty of care. Factors such as the weather are relevant to the analysis, but ice on the roads does not excuse careless or reckless driving, or violations of traffic laws.
A skilled personal injury lawyer will know how to analyze the situation to determine if any financial assistance is available for their clients and argue for the maximum amount allowed by law.
Get help from a local truck accident attorney in your area
The Law Office of Martin T. Montilino is available to assist after any kind of truck or motor vehicle accident in Minneapolis. Depending on your situation, you may be entitled to compensation for injuries and other losses related to the collision.