Residents of Southern Illinois may be curious to read about a string of auto accidents that occurred late in late March near the border of Illinois in St. Louis, Missouri. The car accidents took place on a bridge around 11 a.m. in the morning. The car crashes involved approximately 11 vehicles.
News reports of the car accidents state that a total of three separate collisions occurred. While no serious injuries were immediately reported from the accidents, the wreck resulted in a major traffic jam on Interstate 70.
The first accident took place on the Poplar Street Bridge over the Mississippi River, causing a backup on an exit ramp. This accident may have triggered two others that took place near the exit ramp.
Car accidents that take place on bridges sometimes increase the likelihood of a pileup. The risk of multiple accidents exists because of restricted visibility and limited room to maneuver around accidents sites.
When car accidents take place as a result of a pileup or traffic jam, the theory of proximate causation may come into play in a liability lawsuit. Proximate causation is quite a complicated matter, but it refers to a chain reaction of events or a domino effect. For example, if the negligence of a driver in the first car accident on the Poplar Street Bridge led to the second and third accidents, any injured parties in those accidents may be able to file a personal injury suit against the driver in the first accident.
However, the courts continue to struggle with how closely an injury must be to the negligent action. For this reason, chain reaction car accidents often require an extensive investigation to determine who is at fault and who should be held accountable for any medical bills and lost wages incurred as a result of the accidents.
Source: KFVS, "St. Louis bridge accident spurs others," March 22, 2012