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SISKIYOU COUNTY: Jack Ratliff, 13, Jack E. Ratliff, 45, Died In Semi-Truck Accident On Highway 97 Near Solus Drive

Jun 23, 2019

Jack Ratliff Weed: Jack Ratliff, 13, Jack E. Ratliff, 45, Both From Weed Died In Siskiyou County Semi-Truck Accident On Highway 97 Near Solus Drive

SISKIYOU COUNTY, CALIFORNIA (June 23, 2019) – A father and son from Weed identified as Jack E. Ratliff and Jack Ratliff have tragically died in a big rig truck accident on Highway 97.

California Highway Patrol are saying that the accident took place on Thursday around 10:45 a.m. Both Jack E. Ratliff and Jack Ratliff were traveling down Highway 97 not far from Weed. 

They were traveling north when they were rear-ended by a semi-truck that was also traveling North. The 32-year-old driver of the semi-truck remained at the scene and cooperated with authorities. 

There are competing stories about what may have happened prior to the accident. Police are saying that the Jeep carrying Jack E. Ratliff and Jack Ratliff did not make a u-turn. 

Traffic was heavy in the intersection due to construction int the area. CHP officials are asking anyone with information to contact its Mount Shasta office at 530-926-2627.

What To Do After A Truck Accident

According to the FMCSA, “Of the approximately 475,000 police-reported crashes involving large trucks in 2016, there were 3,864 (0.8 percent) fatal crashes and 104,000 (22 percent) injury crashes.” Every year nearly 4,000 people are killed in accidents with semi-trucks. Those that survive are often left severely injured. There are a number of steps that victims or their surviving family members should take following an accident:

  • If possible, take pictures of the accident scene and the surrounding area. 
  • Identify all of the parties involved and get their contact information.
  • Check for witnesses and get their contact information
  • Seek medical treatment. Insurance companies will try to deny that you were injured if you wait too long to be seen and treated by a doctor.
  • Be careful who you talk to. Insurance adjusters will attempt to use anything that you say against you. It’s best to forgo speaking about your case until you have legal representation.
  • Seek the advice of an experienced truck accident attorney. An attorney can examine all of the facts of your case free of cost and let you know what your legal options are. 

Insurance companies are known for trying to deny liability after an accident. When they are unable to deny liability, they often attempt to downplay the extent of a person’s injuries or the magnitude of a family’s loss. An attorney can help ensure that this does not happen. Depending on the facts of any case there may be numerous sources of liability for a truck accident. 

Liability In Truck Accidents

Truck drivers must remain vigilant and keep a safe distance with other vehicles. According to California Vehicle Code 21703, “The driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of such vehicle and the traffic upon, and the condition of, the roadway.” There is simply no reason for a semi-truck to ever rear-end another vehicle.

Even if a vehicle is stalled in the middle of the road a truck driver should be alert and take evasive maneuvers. A fully loaded semi-truck can weigh 80,000 lbs. Even a low impact collision can be deadly. In many situations, there will be a presumption of negligence if one vehicle rear-ends another. Most trucks are equipped with recording devices that can offer a great deal of insight into what a truck driver was doing before an accident. 

The family of any victim that died in a truck accident may be able to hold the negligent truck driver accountable through a civil claim. Damages in a civil claim can help a family with funeral expenses, lost wages, emotional trauma and loss of love. It’s important that evidence is preserved after an accident. A truck accident attorney can investigate your case free of cost and help ensure that your rights are being protected. 

Investigating A Car Accident

We at West Coast Trial Lawyers extend our deepest sympathies to the family of Jack E. Ratliff and Jack Ratliff. There needs to be a thorough investigation into what happened. Anyone that may have witnessed this accident should reach out to the CHP as they are continuing their investigation. It is our sincere hope that measures are put in place to help reduce the possibility of accidents like this in the future. 

Have you or someone that you care about been involved in a truck accident? You may have legal recourse. Our team of personal injury attorneys can investigate your case free of cost and get to the bottom of what happened. We are committed to making sure that accident victims are aware of their rights and that those rights are being protected. Whether you need more information about an accident or just have questions about your rights we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at (888) 888-9285.

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