Since the accident, no new information’s come to light but, there are a few details worth going over.
Browsing the /r/IdiotsInCars subreddit earlier yesterday and I came across an almost unbelievable dashcam video submitted by /u/ashot_barsegyan showing a Nissan Altima illegally entering an HOV lane without checking if the lane was clear causing a Ford Explorer already in the lane to crash into the Altima at full speed.
After a bit of searching I found out the actual accident happened around June 24, 2022, the location of the crash on I-75 (Sam Johnson Hwy) in Plano, Texas between Chase Oaks Village and Panjab Estates.
Here’s a link to the exact location on Google Maps. If you click here you can even see the exact spot on the K-rail where the Altima crashed into after a Google Maps car passed by the area later on in November.
The original dashcam video seems to be owned by and uploaded to the Youtube channel owned by @user-ic3tc8pb1n with username D F.
Despite several commenters asking for an update, D F has not replied to any of them with no official updates.
A further search on Google around that time did not bring up any relevant reports or stories.
One thing’s for sure, that Nissan Altima shares the majority of, if not all the fault. Presuming that Altima driver was riding solo, entering an HOV lane illegally not in the designated area carries around a $275 fine before extra court fees and the inevitable insurance rate increases.
I scrolled back far enough on I-75 and found the posted speed limit is 70 MPH. This being Texas and with a wide, open lane in front of them, that Ford Explorer was going close to 80 MPH.
According to an Autoweek review of pretty much the same Explorer they found out they needed 263 feet to come to a safe stop from 80 MPH, that’s nearly 88 yards or most of the length of a football field.
You can time it, that Explorer had less than two seconds to react and slow down from the time the Altima entered the HOV lane and was hit.
As evidenced by the numerous broken highway dividers placed between the HOV lane and the left-most lane to further emphasize you’re not supposed to cross double solid white lines, HOV-lane eligible or not, Texas drivers are going to jump into an HOV lane if they’re stuck in traffic, and they see that lane open.
That being said, if you’re going to change lanes, HOV or not, you absolutely have to make sure that lane is open, and no other cars are fast approaching. That means checking over your shoulder and using your mirrors.
Crossing into an HOV lane if you’re not supposed to is one thing, but changing lanes without looking is just asinine.
On top of that, the Altima driver did not even have the presence of mind to give it the beans to get up to speed.
On top of leaving a comment on that dashcam owner’s YouTube channel asking for an update, I’ll keep an eye out for updates and will update this blog post accordingly.
Do you have any updates about what happened after the fact?
Let me know in the comments below.