Just one day before the Fourth of July holiday, a Florida resident was involved in a fatal truck accident in Loudon County, Virginia. The woman was a utility worker who had traveled to the state to help with power restoration efforts following this summer’s severe weather. The truck’s driver was in a convoy of several Gulf Power trucks was in the state to help Virginia power crews restore power to residents more quickly.

According to a witness, the Florida utility worker’s truck appeared to lose braking function on a downhill grade, with its driver unable to gain control. The witness observed that as the truck careened downhill, it seemed to pick up speed.

After possibly experiencing brake problems, the 57-year-old utility worker swerved into another Freightliner vehicle, a truck tractor-semitrailer. A third vehicle, a Toyota Tacoma, became involved in the accident after being hit by the semitrailer.

The Toyota’s driver and passenger both required treatment at a local hospital. Both have been released. The driver of the semitrailer also received medical attention, as did a passenger in the utility worker’s truck.

The recent fatal crash closed Route 7 for over 10 hours, as members of the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office Crash Reconstruction Unit performed their own comprehensive investigation of the scene.

The Loudoun County Crash Reconstruction Unit is still investigating further details of the crash.

When a chain-reaction truck accident occurs, the legal process can be complicated by the death of a truck’s driver. In such a case, it is even more important for victims and witnesses to disclose all details that they can remember to investigators, so that a thorough foundation can exist for any future court cases.

Securing justice for truck accident victims relies on many factors, including a determination of negligence, if applicable. During the discovery phase of a truck accident lawsuit, witnesses carry even more significance when the truck’s driver is deceased.

Source: WRIC, “Utility worker assisting Dominion VA power dies in NOVA crash,” July 4, 2012.