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On Thanksgiving morning, fog is believed to have played a key role in a massive Texas car crash that involved an estimated 100 cars. Two people were killed in the crash and about 120 people were injured.
The pileup happened on both the eastbound and westbound lanes on Interstate 10 about 8:30 in the morning. Investigators believe that dense fog in the Beaumont area caused a chain reaction of crashes, the Houston Chronicle reports.
There were at least four separate accidents, and many of the vehicles involved were tractor trailers and other large vehicles, according to the Chronicle.
The two people killed in the accident were a husband and wife, Vincent and Debra Leggio, whose SUV was struck by an 18-wheeler, authorities said. Many others were seriously injured.
In a massive pileup like this, you may be wondering just who is responsible. In two-car accidents, it is usually easy to piece together what happened and who is to blame. But how do authorities (or, for that matter, lawyers) decide who bears liability for 100-car accidents?
As far as the law is concerned, there are generally no special rules for chain-reaction crashes as compared to single-car accidents. It all boils down to negligence. That means if a driver drove carelessly or recklessly and caused the chain reaction, he would be responsible for all the damage.
However, when you are dealing with about 100 drivers, dense fog, and several chain reactions, it can be very difficult for authorities to piece together the evidence and say with certainty that any one driver was to blame.
For example, if Car A was driving too fast in dense fog and spins out of control, that car may be to blame. But if Car B was tailgating Car A and also driving carelessly, Car B could also share some of the responsibility for the accident.
Different states have different laws regarding car accident liability. Some states may assign a percentage of the blame to each driver; courts in other states may rule that when several negligent drivers contributed to a crash, no one is to blame.
That's why if you have been involved in a multi-car accident, you will want to talk to a personal injury attorney to learn more about your rights and the best way to collect damages.