A Kansas couple was recently killed while riding their motorcycle when they were struck by a trailer that broke loose from a towing pickup. The couple, one of which was a jail deputy at the Reno County Sheriff’s Office, was riding with a group of other motorcyclists around noon. Their two young children were present at the time of the crash. The group of motorcyclists was traveling westbound on 10th Street, a four lane street, when a trailer came loose from an eastbound pickup truck. The trailer crossed over and struck the motorcycle holding the Kansas couple.
Both were airlifted to Via Christi Hospital at St. Francis in Wichita, where the where they perished shortly afterwards. The couple leaves behind two children, ages five and seven. Fortunately, the children were passengers on separate motorcycles during the accident and were not harmed. A memorial fund has been established for these two children who just lost their parents.
The trailer has been seized by the police and an investigator will soon examine it in an attempt to determine what caused the trailer to come off the pickup. The 6 by 12 foot trailer was hauling a riding lawnmower. The trailer appeared to be homemade. The ball on the pickup’s hitch was also confiscated for investigation. It is not known whether a safety chain was used during towing.
This accident is one of hundreds occurring in the state of Kansas that involve trailers breaking loose from towing vehicles. Since 2010, Kansas has had 534 accidents involving run away trailers. Fifteen of these accidents resulted in the death of 21 individuals.
Common causes of runaway trailer accidents include:
- Failure to attach the ball and hitch correctly: The driver of the towing vehicle may use the wrong parts or tools to attach the ball and hitch. When the truck hits a bump or obstacle, or moves quickly the fastening device could unhitch.
- Braking system failures: If the towing vehicle’s brakes fail when going down an incline, the vehicle and trailer may accelerate out of control and the trailer can become loose.
- Improper maintenance: A trailer and its towing components must be maintained in safe condition. Failure to inspect the hitch, ball bearing, and other towing parts could result in a runaway trailer.
- Failure to use a safety chain: Safety chains are designed to increase the safety of towing trailers and decrease the chance of runaway trailers. They are not always used, however.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a runaway trailer accident, contact a licensed accident attorney as soon as possible. Vital evidence must be gathered immediately following this sort of accident to preserve your legal rights.
Contact Kansas City Accident Attorney Michael R. Lawless Today for a Free Consultation
Loose or runaway trailer accidents can lead to serious injuries and sometimes even death. The Kansas City Personal Injury Attorney at the Lenexa, Kansas law firm of Michael R. Lawless, P.A. understand the severe nature of such accidents and will fight to see that any victim of a runaway trailer accident receives the compensation they deserve. For over 27 years, we have zealously represented the victims of all manner of accidents, from car and truck accidents to motorcycle and pedestrian accidents. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your potential accident case, contact Michael R. Lawless, PA by calling our office locally at (913) 681-5566, or you may call us toll-free at (800) 734-3771. You may also contact us online and we will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.