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Stopped traffic behind wreck leads to serious Warrenton accident

After a car accident occurred on Township Line Road in Warrenton, Missouri, Tuesday evening, other motorists pulled over to lend assistance to people involved in the crash. However, a second accident erupted involving the stopped vehicles on the road, injuring four people who were involved in the second wreck.

Many people may remember turning their heads as they pass by a car accident at some point of their lives. Chain-reaction car accidents may occur when drivers are distracted while rubber-necking near the scene of a motor vehicle crash.

But, as the story of Tuesday's crash highlights, other factors may result in injury accidents that occur near the scene of an earlier crash. Traffic jams are common near an accident. Cars approaching a wreck may have little room to simply drive around a crash--some motorists may seek to lend assistance to any accident victims in a crash. Wrecks and traffic snarls can happen at any time of the day.

The Missouri Highway Patrol says that at least two vehicles stopped behind an accident scene around 9:30 Tuesday night in Warrenton. The first car pulled over and a 32-year-old woman who had been riding as a passenger stepped out of the first vehicle to stop.

A minivan pulled over behind the car the Warrenton woman had been riding in. As the motorists lined up near the accident scene, troopers say that a pickup truck approached the area and did not stop for the queue of vehicles.

The pickup struck the minivan, plowing the van forward into the first car in the line. That car struck the passenger who had stepped out to check on the initial accident victims. The Warrenton woman struck by the car she had been riding in was thrown to the ground. She suffered severe personal injuries and was later airlifted to a St. Louis area hospital after the chain-reaction crash.

The woman driving the minivan, a 58-year-old Warrenton woman also suffered serious injuries. Two teenagers from the pickup truck suffered undisclosed injuries in the wreck.

In general, drivers have a duty of care, which includes the duty to slow down or stop for changing traffic conditions.

Source: KSDK, "Jennifer Graves airlifted to hospital after she's hit by car in multi-vehicle crash," Dave Keiser, July 24, 2013