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Near Miss: 18 Wheeler Looses Control

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    An out-of-control 18-wheeler plowed into cars parked along a Grand Prairie street Thursday morning after its driver suffered a medical emergency, police say.

    The incident occurred at about 10 a.m. along Main Street at Northeast 2nd Street, police said. The driver of the 18-wheeler allegedly had a medical emergency and blacked out before the truck veered off the road and into several parked cars. At this time, the nature of his blackout is unknown. Some speculate that the alleged “blackout” was the result of a stroke or seizure. A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted or reduced, preventing brain tissue from getting oxygen and nutrients. Brain cells begin to die in minutes. A seizure on the other hand is a burst of uncontrolled electrical activity between brain cells that causes temporary abnormalities in muscle tone or movements (stiffness, twitching or limpness), behaviors, sensations or states of awareness. It is possible for either condition to emerge suddenly in a patient with no or almost no prior symptoms. Paramedics often say that anyone can have a seizure at any time- medical science has a limited understanding of exactly how the brain functions in relation to seizures.

    The driver was taken to a hospital where he received medical treatment and was later released. No other injuries were reported, police said.

    Security camera footage recorded at a near by barber studio, called A&M Barber Studio, showed the out-of-control tractor-trailer and the trail of damage it left behind. The truck appears to have just missed crashing through the front wall of the business., and could have easily flattened any customers or passers-by. In this case, the crash itself caused massive property damage but had no cost in human life or health. It did, however, make an impression on the team of barbers at work that day:

    “It felt like a movie. Really, it felt like a real-life movie. It just happened so quick,” said Richard Cantu, who was working inside the barbershop at the time of the crash.

    Cantu said when the store is empty, he and his colleagues will often sit on the guardrail that was taken out by the truck. If a large, commercial vehicle were to collide with a pedestrian at speed, odds are that the person in question would not survive the encounter. Even if an eighteen-wheeler driver is aware of a hazard and able to apply the brakes, a large truck is unable to stop on a dime because of its mass and the inertia that comes from it.

    According to police, five parked cars, two light poles, a fire hydrant, a planter, a tree and several bike racks were damaged as the semi truck careened  down the busy road before grinding to a stop along the side of a building. Had anyone been inside one of those cars at the time of the crash, it is extremely likely that they would have been seriously hurt. In that case, the first thing a person should do after getting medical care is to contact a personal injury law specialist, such as the team at the AM Law Group. Our experts help those hurt in a commercial motor vehicle collision get back to their lives gracefully.

    Grand Prairie’s environmental and streets department crews assessed and cleaned the area before the road was reopened, firefighters said. It will take several weeks to repair the damage.

    The A&M Barber Studio is not affiliated with The AM Law Group.

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