A Dec. 6 accident left one driver dead and two others injured. According to New Jersey State Police, the accident occurred on Route 78, and lanes were closed near Exit 49 late into the evening. The two-vehicle collision included an Audi A4, a fuel tanker and a tractor-trailer carrying a load of mulch.
Authorities report that the 24-year-old male driver of the Audi A4 was traveling off the Garden State Parkway ramp onto the westbound side of Route 78 when the accident occurred. The driver passed into the path of the tanker truck, causing a collision. Both vehicles collided with a nearby tractor-trailer in the express lane. The impact of the collision ignited the 9,000 gallons of fuel in the tanker truck, causing both trucks to ignite as well.
A specialized team was called in from Newark Liberty International Airport to manage the fire while all but one of the westbound Route 78 lanes were closed. Responders pronounced the Audi driver dead at the scene of the wreck. The 35-year-old tanker driver was taken to the hospital in critical condition. The 53-year-old driver of the mulch truck was treated and released from a local hospital.
A deceased driver may still be found at fault for the accident if a police investigation uncovers evidence of negligence. Injured crash victims may pursue personal injury lawsuits to receive compensation from the deceased’s estate. Potential areas of compensation may include medical expenses, pain and suffering and lost wages if a victim is unable to continue working.
Source: NJ.com, “Chatham man killed in fiery Route 78 crash, trucker critically injured“, Noah Cohen and Jessica Remo, December 06, 2014