Winter Storm Gail Causes Fatal 66-Vehicle Accident in Pennsylvania By Attorney Tom Foley III on December 18, 2020

A broken windshieldWinter Storm Gail pelted the northeast this week. The Weather Channel noted that Binghamton, NY had a staggering 40 inches of snow. While Scranton, Stroudsburg, and Wilkes-Barre, PA weren't hit as hard as some other cities in the northeast, any amount of ice or snow on the road can lead to dangerous conditions. The winter storm clearly contributed to a deadly 66-vehicle auto accident here in Pennsylvania.

The skilled car accident lawyers at the Foley Law Firm would like to go over the details of the fatal collision on Interstate 80. We'll consider what factors could have caused the crash and what you can do to protect yourself in these kinds of situations.

About the Multi-Vehicle Collision

According to the New York Post, the 66-vehicle pileup happened in Clinton County around 3pm on Wednesday.

As snow accumulated on Interstate 80, dozens of tractor-trailers skidded out of control on the westbound side. This multi-vehicle accident spanned more than one mile of the highway, claiming one life and injuring many others.

In total, 55 large trucks and 11 passenger vehicles were involved in this crash. This stretch of Interstate 80 remained closed yesterday as crews attempted to clear away the vehicles.

Authorities reported a second fatality involving a passenger in the pileup, though this was due to a medical condition rather than trauma sustained during the collision.

Additional Fatalities Surrounding Winter Storm Gail

The New York Post reports that Winter Storm Gail caused five other deaths at the time of this writing. Just outside of Pittsburgh, a pedestrian was fatally struck by a snow plow. There was also a fatal car accident in Kansas related to the storm, killing one person and injuring two others.

The Dangers of Driving in Winter Storms

Winter storms pose so many dangers to motorists no matter the size of their vehicle. The main hazards caused by winter weather include:

  • Slippery Roads - Ice and snow make it difficult for a vehicle to maintain proper traction. Even skilled drivers can skid and lose control on an icy road. This is one of the major factors in the Winter Storm Gail pileup. With larger vehicles like tractor-trailers, maintaining control can be virtually impossible in poor weather.
  • Poor Visibility - Heavy snowstorms obscure visibility while on the road. Windshield wipers and headlights can help a little bit, but a veil of snow will simply make it difficult to see what’s ahead of you. Combine limited visibility with longer stopping times due to slippery roads and you have a high risk of deadly crashes like the one earlier this week.

How You Can Keep Yourself Safe on the Road

As we are bound to face more winter storms in the coming weeks, there are a few things you can do to keep you and your loved ones safe:

  • Monitor weather conditions and plan drives and travel accordingly
  • Monitor road and traffic conditions to learn about dangerous conditions or road closures
  • Make sure your vehicle has proper tires and/or chains when driving in the snow
  • Drive slowly to account for slippery roads and reduced visibility

Contact Foley Law Firm

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, our lawyers can help you. To learn more about your legal options, contact our attorneys online or call our law offices at (570) 209-5639.

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The attorneys of the Foley Law Firm provide committed personal injury representation to eastern Pennsylvania. Our firm is proud to be affiliated with prominent organizations, including:

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If you are looking for legal representation from a top-rated personal injury law firm in Scranton, call us at (800) 523-6539 or request a consultation online.

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