Authorities are currently investigating a serious accident in Lakewood, Colorado just minutes outside of downtown Denver. The accident occurred on Interstate 70 and involved 28 vehicles. Of these vehicles, 24 were cars and 4 were semi-trucks. Witnesses and authorities allege that one of the semi-trucks caused the accident.
What Happened During the Lakewood Pileup?
Witnesses report that they saw the truck barreling down the highway at speeds of at least 80 mph. Josh McCutchen was streaming a live video to his YouTube channel as he was waiting in the thick Lakewood rush hour traffic. He inadvertently captured the truck as it barreled past his vehicle. The truck eventually slammed into stopped traffic, triggering a massive fire which prevented authorities from investigating the accident for some time. At least four people were killed and six were seriously injured in the crash, but authorities have not ruled out finding more victims.
The man who was driving the truck is a 23-year-old holder of a Texas license. He was driving a flatbed loaded with lumber. According to the man’s brother, the truck’s brakes went out and caused him to barrel into the stopped group of cars. The driver sustained injuries from the accident but was released from the hospital. He has since been charged with vehicular homicide and is scheduled for a Saturday court appearance.
What We Know About the Accident
According to Josh Laipply, a chief engineer at the Colorado Department of Transportation, the fire melted aluminum and reached temperatures of up to 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit. Engineers are currently inspecting the safety of a nearby bridge that was damaged in the crash. Witnesses reported hearing multiple explosions as crews worked to control the raging fire that engulfed the scene. One of the first responders to the scene was David Barton, a panhandler who frequents the area. "It just caught on fire. And I just dropped my sign, took off running," Barton said. "As soon as I [saw] flames, I headed under the bridge, grabbed three or four people out of a couple cars," Barton said.
According to Ty Countryman of the Lakewood Police Department, authorities are working to identify the mechanical condition of the truck before the accident. "If the driver's out of control, that's certainly a big concern that we have. The question is, why is he out of control?" Countryman said. Countryman continued by saying that “This is looking to be one of the worse accidents we’ve had here in Lakewood.”
Police are still investigating the scene and identifying everyone who was in the accident.
Arnold & Itkin’s truck accident attorneys are following this story. If you or a loved one were involved with this accident, call us right now for help at (888) 490-0442.