MARBLE FALLS, TX (03/07/2016) — Benjamin Weems was identified as the victim of a fatal wreck involving an 18-wheeler and a dump truck on Monday afternoon.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), 32-year-old Benjamin (Ben) Weems was killed in a two-vehicle collision that occurred along Highway 281 in Marble Falls, Texas.
The DPS reported that at around 12:16 pm., a 1998 Freightliner 18-wheeler—driven by 37-year-old Joseph Slocum—was waiting at a stop sign on the eastern side of the highway when a northbound 2000 Freightliner dump truck (driven by Weems) approached.
Slocum then pulled his 18-wheeler across the highway to travel southbound, failing to yield right-of-way and causing Weems to collide with the tractor trailer.
“The driver of (the 18-wheeler) thought that the driver of (the dump truck) was turning into the [rock] quarry,” the DPS report stated.
Weems’ dump truck struck the cargo bed of the 18-wheeler and become lodged underneath the semi-trailer.
Weems was ejected and pronounced dead at the scene.
Officials stated that the accident occurred because the driver of the 18-wheeler misjudged the intentions of the dump truck driver and failed to yield the right of way. Once the 18-wheeler pulled onto the highway, there was likely nothing that could have been done by Weems to avoid the truck accident. However, there was something that the driver of the semi-trailer could have done before he made his maneuver: checked twice.
Even if the dump truck had his turn signal activated, a CDL driver knows full-well not to make assumptions about the intentions of other drivers, especially when an incorrect assumption could lead to an accident.