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VANDERBURGH COUNTY, IN – A man died in a truck accident Monday night on a highway in Vanderburgh County in Southern Indiana. The semi trailer and passenger car caught fire after the deadly incident which occurred on U.S. Highway 41 where it meets Rusher Creek Road. The truck accident area is in the far southwest corner of the state near the borders with Illinois and Kentucky, about 25 miles southeast of Mount Carmel, IL and about 52 miles northwest of Owensboro, KY.

On Monday night, November 8, 48 year old truck driver Samuel Rouse of Granite City, Illinois was driving a 2007 Freightliner semi trailer truck through Vanderburgh County, in the southern section of Indiana. The cargo and destination of the truck driver is not known. There were no passengers in the semi at the time of the truck accident.

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Shortly after 6:35 p.m. Monday evening the truck driver was eastbound on Rusher Creek approaching the juncture with U.S. Highway 41, near the town of Haubstadt, Vanderburgh County. The truck accident happened as Mr. Rouse attempted to get onto northbound U.S. 41. The truck driver was crossing over the southbound lanes of the highway when his semi trailer truck collided with a southbound 2003 Cadillac. The identity of the man driving the Cadillac has not been released.

After the initial collision the Cadillac became wedged under the back trailer section of the semi tractor, trapping the driver inside of the car. The force of the truck accident apparently damaged one of the vehicles’ fuel tanks and a fire erupted under the back section. The flames quickly engulfed the Cadillac and trailer section.

Nearby residents and passersby stopped and used portable fire extinguishers on the burning semi and car. Police responding to the site of the collision tried to reach the trapped driver while they waited for local rescue teams to reach the crash site. Once county firefighters arrived at the scene of the truck accident they attempted to put out the flames and free the driver of the Cadillac from underneath the semi trailer.

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Unfortunately they were not able to reach the man in time and he died at the site of the truck accident. The truck driver, Mr. Rouse, was able to escape from the burning semi trailer and was not injured in the collision and subsequent fire. Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire and keep it from spreading to nearby buildings.

Police shut down the intersection of Rusher Creek and U.S. 41 while they investigated the scene and highway crews cleared the traffic lanes. It would take several hours to clear the debris and haul the burnt wreckage of the Cadillac and semi trailer away from the truck accident site. Authorities expected the area to be cleared in time for the Tuesday morning commuter rush.

Officers with the Indiana State Police are taking the lead in the investigation. They reconstructed the fatal truck accident but have not yet made their findings public. One possibility for the incident is that the driver of the Cadillac failed to see the semi trailer crossing over the southbound lanes of U.S. 41 until it was too late to avoid a collision. Another possibility is that the semi truck driver pulled out onto the highway without checking to see if there was oncoming traffic.

It is not known if officials suspect drugs or alcohol has being factors in the deadly crash. The weather was reportedly calm, with no dangerous conditions, at the time of the truck accident.

No charges have been brought at this time and the truck accident remains under investigation.

Often times the truck company and the truck driver will be from other states other than where the accident occurred. Truck accident attorneys often times have relationships with other experienced truck accident lawyers licensed in other states. Gordon, Elias & Seely LLP are licensed in Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana and Washington, DC and have informal relationships with other truck accident lawyers. Visit their IN truck accident lawyer page for more information about Indiana truck accidents or call toll free 24/7 at 1.800.773.6770.

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