Safety & Compliance

Runaway Truck Avoids Death In Virginia

September 28, 1998

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Sept. 29 – It's a trucker's nightmare: barreling down a hillside with no brakes and seeing traffic stopped below.
That’s what happened last Thursday to John Franklin of Baton Rouge, LA, on I-81 near Christiansburg, VA, reports the Associated Press. Eight cars and four trucks were sitting in stopped traffic waiting for overturned vehicles to be cleared off the road when they got the word that a tractor-trailer was barreling toward them and wouldn’t be able to stop in time. The drivers pulled their vehicles as far onto the shoulders as possible.
Seconds later, the truck sped through the makeshift alley, damaging vehicles in both lanes before slamming into a pickup truck and catching on fire. Franklin suffered burns over 70% of his body and was in critical condition at the University of Virginia Medical Center, but no one was killed.
Virginia state troopers said the CB radio communication that spread the word about the out-of-control truck probably saved a number of lives.

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