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Arizona Storm Causes 69 Car Crash

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By Laura Strachan, Esq. on August 30, 2010 12:26 PM

A surprise Arizona storm caused a 69 car crash on a highway near Downtown Phoenix this past Saturday. Believed to be one of the biggest multi-car pile ups in recent Phoenix history, the sizeable crash sent seven people to the hospital, according the MSNBC.

Department of Public Safety spokesman Bob Bailey describes the chaotic scene, "The storm hit hard, hit fast, and caught a lot of drivers by surprise. The collisions began in the far right side of the roadway near the 7th street exit ramp and this thing kind of perpetuated itself, enveloping the whole roadway." Luckily none of the injuries were reported as life-threatening. The interstate was closed for roughly 3 hours, as over 100 firemen worked to clear cars, and provide alternate transportation and assistance for all the parties involved.

Multi-car accidents are most common on freeways. Not surprisingly, the fast speeds and close driving proximity create the perfect storm for everyday driving accidents. With the addition of slippery road conditions and limited visibility caused by a storm, the potential for an accident increases exponentially as drivers do not make the necessary accommodations for the increased driving dangers.

So who's to blame for the damage? The Arizona car crash was essentially a series of never-ending rear end collisions. Generally speaking, the party that gets hit from behind is typically not at fault for the accident, and can collect damages. Multi-car collisions are an exception to this rule, as the determination of liability can get quite complicated. The Arizona car crash is a perfect example of just how difficult determining fault can be, as no one car was the sole cause of the crashes. Comparative negligence, the legal theory that establishes fault based on the degree of negligence each party is determined to have acted with, is often employed by courts for complicated car crashes. In this instance, mother nature may have been to blame, but unfortunately she does not carry insurance.

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