It’s unknown whether the driver of an 18-wheeler will face any charges after a preliminary Fort Worth police investigation of the Sept. 11 Interstate 35W crash that killed four and injured five found that the semi-truck was in the far left lane when it hit a group of vehicles and people who had pulled over on the side of the freeway.
Fort Worth police told the Star-Telegram that several people had stopped to help the driver of a Chrysler 200 that was traveling northbound on the freeway south of downtown when it began to spin. The car then veered to the left, hit the center median, and became disabled.
A white Ford F-350 pickup truck, a white Freightliner semi-truck cab without a trailer, a white Hyundai Elantra, and a black Hyundai Sonata all stopped and the drivers and passengers got out of their vehicles to check on the driver of the Chrysler 200, according to the investigation.
While they were outside of their vehicles, a white Freightliner semi-truck with a trailer traveling northbound in the far left lane collided with the Sonata causing the Sonata to strike the Elantra, police said.
After the semi-truck with the trailer hit the Sonata, it collided with the vehicles and people who had stopped at the initial crash scene, according to the investigation.
City ordinance signs on that area of I-35W state, “No Trucks Left Lane,” but according to Transportation Code 545.065, “an order or ordinance under Subsection (b) must allow a restricted vehicle to use any lane of the highway to pass another vehicle and to enter and exit the highway.”
The investigation so far hasn’t determined with the truck was in the far left lane.
No charges have been filed against the driver of the semi-truck with the trailer and the case is still under investigation.
The Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office identified those who died at the crash scene as 31-year-old Susana Longoria, of Fort Worth; 23-year-old Kiara Barker, originally of Bastrop, Louisiana; and 25-year-old Chase Mapes, of Yukon, Oklahoma. Jasmine Jones, 21, died at a hospital.
Longoria was the driver of the Chrysler 200, her family told KDFW-TV. She was on her way home from nursing school at Tarrant County College south campus at the time of the accident, her family said on a GoFundMe page.
“Susie touched the lives of everyone around her with her positive outlook in life, her infectious personality and her smile as bright as the sun,” the GoFundMe description says.
Longoria always tucked her 9-year-old daughter into bed when she got home, her family told WFAA. They said they still have unanswered questions about the crash that took her life and whether anyone will be held responsible.
A woman and four men had injuries and were transported to hospitals, according to MedStar.
Police have said they don’t believe that alcohol or weather were factors in the crash.