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A Recent Tragic Event – My Personal Reflection

Q. Why Do Crashes Happen?

May I take just a moment of your time today and share with you a recent event that took place in my personal life? My wife and I were traveling from Alabama to Northern Illinois on Sunday, April 2 when we experienced a heavy traffic delay on Interstate 57 in Southern Illinois.

Please see the following for details:
ORIGINAL: 4:15 p.m. SUNDAY, APRIL 2, 2017
FRANKLIN CO. – The Franklin County Emergency Management Agency has closed I-57 southbound between Exit 71 and 65 due to a crash involving a passenger car and semi.

The crash occurred around 3:00 p.m. today. Traffic is currently backed up between Benton and West Frankfort. A press release from the Illinois State police says traffic is being re-routed to Illinois Route 37 at Benton.

UPDATED: 5:00 p.m. SUNDAY, APRIL 2, 2017
FRANKLIN CO. – ISP confirmed the crash was a head-on collision, resulting in at least one fatality.

UPDATED: 6:30 p.m. SUNDAY, APRIL 2, 2017
FRANKLIN COUNTY – Illinois State Police released the names of the drivers involved in the crash on I-57 at milepost 67. Investigators identified the drivers as 29-year-old Franklin Raymond Reid of Emory, Texas and 24-year-old Lauren M. Reeves of Cabot, Arkansas. 

Investigators say the 2015 Volvo Truck Tractor Reid was driving crossed the center median and struck the 2015 Toyota Camry Reeves was driving. Reeves died as a result of the impact of the crash, investigators say.

Traffic was diverted to Illinois Route 37 for several hours as emergency crews worked to clear the scene.

A. Why Do Crashes Happen?

As my wife and I drove past the crash zone and witnessed the debris field and the large Illinois State Police presence, and yes even the local coroners van, we were both hit with a feeling of sorrow for the people involved. Our thoughts were turned to earlier in the day when both of these vehicles with their respective drivers began their journey with no idea what the future held for them or their families.

The question in our mind as we continued on our journey was why…why did the truck driver cross the center median, what caused him to lose control of his vehicle, what happened? Was it a vehicle failure or human error? And what was the person thinking as the semi-truck made its way onto their side of the road – a north bound vehicle now heading right at her.

Many times when a vehicle crash occurs, there are more questions than answers…today, I encourage you to truly spend time sharing the message of driver safety with all of your family, friends and associates…one life lost in a motor-vehicle crash is one too many.

Each month we produce “The Driver Advantage™” e-newsletter for you and those you people you live and work with. Please take advantage of the information found in this monthly publication, as well as all Driving Dynamics Inc. training programs, to better prepare yourself and your team for the emergency moments in life when driving.

This question was answered by:

Ben Langley is the Safety Editor for “The Driver Advantage™”. Ben is a passionate proponent for driver safety education, training and awareness. Continuously submerged in research targeting human behavior and driver safety; Ben initiates creative thinking that is evident in his writings. Ben also develops unique, exciting and results oriented driver safety programs and campaigns. His knowledge and common sense approach to driver safety is wrapped with authentic concern for people. Ben is also the co-found of Safety Wins, Inc. a 501©(3) non-profit organization. The Safety Wins concept of training fleet drivers at NASCAR Race Tracks throughout America was federally and privately funded. Today, Safety Wins, Inc focuses on Teen Driver Safety and continues to use the platform of motorsports to attract attention to their life saving driver safety message. Contact the author

- has written 50 posts on Driving Dynamics.

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