ONTARIO, CA – Four people died Saturday in a fiery multi-vehicle chain reaction truck accident. The accident occurred on Freeway 15 near Ontario, California about 37 miles west of Los Angeles. The accident area is in the southwest section of the state, 114 miles north of San Diego, CA and 235 miles southwest of Las Vegas, Nevada.
The chain accident began at about 12:20 p.m. Saturday afternoon and would end up involving three tractor trailer trucks, a U Haul truck, and two passenger cars. The truck accident happened in the southbound lanes of Freeway 15, south of Jurupa Avenue. The deadliest part of the multi truck collision was at the end, involving the last few vehicles in the chain reaction, two 18 wheelers with a passenger car in between.
The first semi truck at some point stopped, and the passenger car and second semi truck were unable to stop or maneuver out of the way to avoid rear-ending the vehicle in front. The passenger vehicle was left sandwiched in between the two tractor trailer trucks.The passenger car and the cab of the second truck burst into flames upon impact. A large plume of black smoke could be seen rising from the fiery wreckage.
One worker at nearby Tyro Tires took a fire extinguisher to the double truck accident to try and put out the flames, but the heat was too intense and he was unable to get close to the burning vehicles. He could hear a woman in the passenger vehicle screaming for her children. A security guard at Tyro Tires said he tried to call 911 but kept getting a busy signal.
California Highway Patrol and the Ontario Fire Department quickly responded to the truck accident scene. The passenger vehicle was destroyed by the flames and all occupants killed in the truck accident. Authorities did not identify the victims, but did confirm that there were two adults and two children.
According to an Ontario Fire Department official four other people in the truck accident were transported to a local hospital to be treated for their injuries. The four were not identified and officials did not indicate the extent of their injuries, however one report said that the injuries were not life threatening.
CHP closed down the freeway around the truck accident scene for several hours and diverted traffic off at Jurupa Avenue. Freeway 15 is a connecting route between the counties of San Bernardino County and San Diego and Las Vegas, Nevada. The section would remain closed for several hours while authorities conducted an investigation and crews cleared the wreckage from the freeway. The southbound lanes would reopen about five hours after the truck accident.
Authorities have not determined what initially set off the deadly chain reaction collision. The truck accident remains under investigation.
Since trucking laws are governed by hundreds of regulations, litigation can be very complex. Hiring a truck accident attorney who specializes in the numerous trucking laws throughout the United States is essential for a successful verdict outcome. Contact an experienced California truck accident lawyer for more information.