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Trucking Accident / July 25, 2023

The 12 Worst Truck Accidents in the US

There are thousands of truck accidents every year, but many of them are fairly small and result in zero fatalities. However, there are some occasions when a truck accident is catastrophic enough to make the national news. These types of collisions often involve multiple vehicles, with multiple people injured or killed, which makes them so complicated to break down from a legal perspective. Throughout this article, we’re going to discuss the twelve worst truck accidents in American history.

The Most Devastating Pileups Involving Trucks


In February 2021, there was a 133-vehicle pile-up that led to the deaths of six people and more than 12 injuries. The accident wasn’t caused by anyone’s actions, it’s said that slight sleet overnight had left the road’s surfaces extra slippery. The section of the road was closed for almost a whole day, which saw firefighters and other responders working tirelessly through freezing conditions to clear up the wreckage.


This accident, which took place on Michigan’s Interstate 96, wasn’t directly caused by a truck driver. However, it’s thought that an SUV, around 10 other cars, and a truck all kicked off the collision. The resulting chain reaction led to around 114 vehicles all coming together. There were several fatalities, which included a 14-year-old boy who was a passenger in the first SUV.

The initial cause is unclear. However, resorts note that there was thick fog at the time, so this was recorded as the leading factor in the crash.

Los Angeles

One of the largest pileups in US history took place just outside of Los Angeles in 2002. There were 218 vehicles involved and 41 people were injured. Amazingly, there were zero fatalities reported. The pile-up was started by the driver of a truck, which hit the central reservation and caused an enormous chain reaction.

At the time, it was thought that there was serious fog on the road, which was the leading cause of many resulting crashes. The carnage is said to have stretched for around two miles, and the wreckage took around half a day to clean up.


Returning to Michigan, this time on the Galesburg I-94, a strange series of events led to an enormous 193-vehicle collision. The cause of the initial pile-up isn’t quite known, but it was discovered that a truck carrying acid and a trailer loaded with fireworks were involved.

With so many vehicles involved, it’s surprising there was only a single death and 23 injuries reported. Given the environmental issues involved, people within a mile of the scene were told to stay inside their homes. The clean-up took the authorities 12 hours.


Interstate 10 near Mobile, Alabama, is the site of one of the most horrific pileups in US history. In 1995, 200 vehicles piled up including many trucks. There was a single fatality and a further 90 injuries. Like many pileups on this list, it’s said that fog from the bay below the bridge caused poor visibility.

The Most Tragic Truck Accidents

New Jersey

In 1973, adverse weather conditions led to poor visibility along the New Jersey Turnpike, resulting in several trucks piling up along with other vehicles. After emergency services attended the scene and the wreckage was cleared, it was reported that there were 40 injuries and nine deaths.


When a gasoline-carrying truck traveled through the Caldecott Tunnel in 1982, the load caught fire and significantly damaged the tunnel, which was closed down in the following months to be repaired. The fire caused seven fatalities and a couple of injuries, which is extremely lucky. Had the fire taken place during rush hour, the death count would have likely been in the hundreds.

North Carolina

While making a trip to Texas, two sisters were killed when their vehicle collided with two trucks. The first impact sent the car into a spin on the road, which led to it being hit by a car. The disaster didn’t end there, as a second truck drove over the car and tragically killed the two teen sisters.

South Carolina

A truck driver traveling between Georgia and New York hit the median and went straight through a central barrier in Blacksburg, which resulted in a head-on collision with another truck. Unfortunately, a raging fire broke out and the driver was burnt beyond recognition, which meant the only means of identification was through dental records.


Back in 1976, a truck with a 7,500-gallon load of ammonia crashed into the guardrail and wound up in a jackknife. The truck was then launched off the highway ramp and landed on a crowded road, which led to five fatalities and 180 injuries. After an investigation, it was found that the truck driver was speeding, which led to a loss of control that had deadly consequences.


On April 30th, 2017, a truck fatal accident took place on Birmingham’s I-59 which killed a fire chief and left his daughter with serious injuries. According to reports, an 18-wheeler truck crossed the center of the road with zero reasons and collided straight with two vehicles, which included the fire chief’s SUV. In the following months, a devastated family left grief-ridden filed a wrongful death suit against the truck driver.


Driving in the snow is dangerous and it can lead to serious accidents. Unfortunately, a Montana school bus traveling through a snowstorm came into contact with a fuel tanker truck. The bus driver and the high school passengers were struck when the truck ended up traveling along the wrong side of the highway. The collision resulted in an enormous fire, which unfortunately killed nine of the passengers and left 19 with a range of different injuries.

There are many different reasons for truck accidents including adverse weather conditions, negligence, distractions, and loss of control. Although the majority of truck accidents aren’t of this magnitude, they’re still a regular occurrence in the US.

If you or someone you love has been involved in a collision with a truck, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us using the details below. Here at Derek L. Hall, P.C., we can help you get the compensation you deserve.

Visit our Ridgeland office at 370 Towne Center Blvrd MS 39157. Or call now for a free consultation on (601) 981 4717.

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