A terrible one-vehicle highway accident in Kansas took the lives of at least five family members and injured 13 more on Sunday, when the customized RV they were traveling in hit the guardrail on a bridge, lost control, and plummeted over the edge into a ravine.
The Jordan, Minnesota, Jordan Independent,reports that five members of the Kerber family of Jordan died at the scene. Another 13 people, including seven more Kerber family members and six friends, remain hospitalized in hospitals in suburban Kansas City.
The Kerbers were returning from a vacation to Texas and were driving a large rig made from a Freightliner box truck that had been converted to include living quarters. The truck was towing a trailer. Speculation from highway patrol is that the people inside the RV were not wearing seat restraints. This may prove to be a contributing factor in both the fatalities and the seriousness of the injuries to the survivors. The weight and size of the vehicle contributed to its overpowering low guardrails, which it struck while traveling across a bridge.
Seatbelt restraints in RVs are not common or required other than in the driver’s seat and front passenger seat. For that reason, many RV owners are forced to have additional seat belts installed. The problem becomes even more complex when young children are involved. RV forums online are littered with posts from parents concerned about where and how to install a car seat in an RV.
While the purpose of an RV is to provide a comfortable place to travel, the lack of seat belts in them and the way in which many are treated as moving houses instead of heavy, fast moving vehicles, can lead to terrible results when a tragic accident or even simple quick braking occurs.
There are lots of after market seat belt options for RV owners, and RV owners are advised to install seat belts in all available locations inside the RV. Experts say that, if you are traveling in an RV, you should treat it as though you are traveling in a car. That means seat belts on, limited moving about the cabin, and a focus on safety at all times.
The safety of individuals is of the utmost concern to the staff in Van Sant Law. Mr. Van Sant is an Alpharetta personal injury attorney who helps victims of accidents of all types. If you need the assistance of a personal injury lawyer in Georgia, contact David Van Sant today.