As a truck accident attorney, I deal with the aftermath of tractor-trailer wrecks too often. It’s particularly troubling when accidents happen closer to home. I grew up in Michigan, and have a Michigan office, so it was especially troubling for me to learn of the accident September 8, 2009 on I-196 in Grandville, MI.
Just before 8 a.m. that Monday morning, a truck traveling across an overpass in the westbound lane near Chicago Drive struck the rear end of an SUV. The reasons for the accident are not yet clear, but the results are: Two people lost their lives and a third is hospitalized with major injuries.
One of the deceased, 83-year-old Edna Gorter, a passenger in the SUV, was married just two years to 82-year-old Robert Gorter, the vehicle’s driver. 70-year-old Robert Osborne, the driver of the tractor-trailer was also killed. The crash was so violent that Osborne’s big rig went over the guardrail and crashed onto Chicago Drive below, bursting into flames that sent an enormous plume of black smoke into the morning sky. Fortunately, good Samaritans were able to remove Mr. Gorter from his SUV before it was too late.
I am familiar with that stretch of I-196 between Holland and Grand Rapids known as the Ford Freeway. Unfortunately, I am also familiar with the scenario of the accident. The tremendous forces involved in truck accidents can wreak havoc and devastate lives, and often result in catastrophic or fatal injuries. It is not uncommon for vehicles in such accidents to burst into flames and for drivers and passengers to become trapped inside – both of which appear to have been factors in this crash.
My thoughts go out to the family and friends of all the victims of this accident. In my experience as a truck accident lawyer, every truck accident has a cause. It now falls to investigators, law enforcement officials and qualified attorneys to help discover the cause of this accident so that justice may be served and so that anything learned may be used to help prevent similar events in the future.
Truck Accident Summary
Day: Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Type of Accident: Fatality Truck Crash
Location: Grandville, Michigan