Clarion, PA- Sudden snow squalls descended on Interstate 80 in Pennsylvania Wednesday leading to a massive pile-up, involving a total of 18 vehicles, which left two people dead and nearly three dozen injured.
Police say that the accident occurred around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday when two snow squalls hit the area, reducing visibility to nothing. The conditions that caused this accident were unexpected and caught motorist completely by surprise. One collision led to another and soon the westbound lanes of I-80 near mile marker 65 was littered with the wreckage of cars and at least nine tractor-trailers, according to the Pittsburg Post-Gazette.
According to reports, a truck driver was killed when he got out of his vehicle to see if other motorists were hurt. Another man died of injuries he sustained after he was thrown onto his steering wheel, according to the Post-Gazette.
Police are unclear of how many people were injured but estimates put the count near 30 individuals, with at least three suffering serious injuries.
Police are still investigating the accident and trying to determine what set off the chain-reaction collision. Weather obviously played a role, but for liability purposes police must determine the exact cause and which motorist or motorists were responsible.
Around 7 a.m. Wednesday, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation reduced the speed on I-80 to 45 mph after the National Weather Service issued a lake-effect snow warning.
It’s too soon to tell if motorists actually heeded the weather warning and reduced their speed. Given human nature, it’s likely that one or two motorists were driving in excess of the speed limit. In snow or ice conditions, speed can be a motorist’s worst enemy. It is so easy to lose control and go into a spin when a speeding motorist hits a slick patch on the road. When it comes to snow and ice, slow and steady is the best way to travel.
When you are hurt or lose a loved one because of negligent motorist, you can rely on one of gifted accident attorneys to secure a favorable settlement on your behalf.
Massive pile-ups like these are not all that unusual in winter, especially in areas that see snow regularly. On Monday of this week a 20-car pile-up in Iowa caused injury to five people, but fortunately none of those injuries were life-threatening.
Last February, Pennsylvania—Butts County to be precise– was the scene of another massive chain-reaction collision that involved a total of 100 vehicles! This was a situation caused by a snow and ice that caught motorists by surprise. Thankfully, no one was killed in that pileup, but nearly three dozen people were injured.
It can be difficult to determine fault in multiple-vehicle accidents that result from adverse weather. That is why the injured or surviving family members must consult with an accident attorney as soon as they are able. This will allow them to determine how they are going to get the compensation need to cover their medical costs, loss of wages and emotional suffering.

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