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Ohio family killed in possible distracted driving event

An Ohio family, including both parents and their young child, died in an accident with a semitruck.

Investigators are still checking into the details, but early reports indicate that the semi ran the red light at the intersection -- which ultimately led to multiple vehicles being involved and the three fatalities. It's currently believed that the semi's driver was also speeding and somehow distracted at the time of the accident.

The family that died were T-boned by the semi. The ricochet from the initial accident ended up pushing the semi into two other vehicles, although those drivers walked away relatively unscathed.

The truck driver wasn't as lucky. He suffered serious injuries himself, and it took rescue squads two hours to free him from the semi so that he could be transported to a hospital.

Investigators are using all the tools at their disposal to try to learn exactly what happened, including witness statements, surveillance videos from local businesses that caught parts of the accident on tape, and the "black box" from the semi. Semis are now equipped with some of the same technology that airplanes have long had -- electronic monitoring devices that capture a lot of small pieces of data.

That data can become invaluable in proving fault when an accident happens. In this case, the black box pulled from the semi showed the driver was exceeding the speed limit. Investigators have also stated that "inattentive" or distracted driving likely played a factor in the accident, although the lead investigator couldn't give any more details because the investigation isn't over.

Speeding and distracted driving are each enough to cause a disaster on the road, especially when a semitruck is involved. A car simply doesn't stand a chance against the relative size and weight of a semi in an accident. If the preliminary reports are true, then the driver was clearly negligent by failing to operate the semi at the proper speed and failing to give his main task -- driving -- his full attention.

If a close relative of yours is killed in a car accident with a negligent driver, talk to an attorney about the possibility of a wrongful death claim. Similarly, if you've been injured, talking to an attorney helps protect your rights and can help you get the compensation you need to deal with painful, disabling injuries after a crash.

Source: myDaytonDailyNews.com, "New details in crash that killed Preble County couple, child," Mark Gokavi, Sep. 13, 2017

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