On Wednesday afternoon, a runaway trailer killed a person driving a Jeep on Country Club Road in Jacksonville, North Carolina. The collision happened around 1:30 pm when a trailer detached from a pickup and collided with the jeep.
Initial reports suggest that there were safety chains on the trailer but it is not clear if the chains failed. Based on our experience, if there were safety chains that failed, there would certainly be evidence of failure in the form of stretched and torn links. The initial reports also do not indicate whether the trailer was properly hitched with the trailer coupler down and latch/coupler pin in place. I would seem very unlikely that such an accident would occur if the trailer was properly hitched. In a case such as this, we would quickly employ an accident engineer to document the condition of the trailer to determine whether it was hitched properly to the vehicle.