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Christmas weekend pileup leaves 2 dead, 6 injured in New Jersey

The Christmas weekend started off with a horrific accident on a New Jersey freeway. Ultimately, two people died and six others were injured after a total of seven vehicles ended up in a pileup on the morning of Dec. 22, 2017.

The entire freeway was shut down for miles while the police investigated the fiery crash that ended up engulfing four of the seven vehicles involved. Onlookers said that the noise, fire and confusion were hard to sort through in order to understand what was happening.

According to early investigative reports, there were actually several accidents that took place in rapid succession, leading to the major tragic deaths and injuries.

A Honda and another car had a relatively minor accident, leaving them both stranded on the left side of the highway. Shortly afterward, an Infiniti -- whose driver must not have been eyeing the road carefully enough -- slammed into the Honda.

For whatever reason, perhaps to render aid, the driver of a Jeep stopped behind the others -- only to be struck by an arriving Hyundai. The force of that accident drove the Jeep into a second accident with the Infiniti. A Chevy arriving on the scene then hit the Hyundai. Both the Chevy and the Hyundai caught fire.

It's important for investigators to try to sort out the order in which vehicles were struck -- especially when there are fatalities and injuries involved. The survivors of the deceased may end up filing wrongful death lawsuits and those who were wounded may end up filing personal injury lawsuits. The police investigation helps insurers and juries later assign liability to the appropriate parties.

Accidents like these also illustrate what can happen when drivers don't pay enough attention to the road -- what started out as a simple car accident between two vehicles turned into a tragedy quickly, likely due to inattentive drivers or those driving too fast to stop once they spotted the accident ahead.

Anyone involved in a multiple-car pileup would be wise to explore their legal options as soon as possible.

Source: www.nbcnewyork.com, "2 Killed, 6 Injured in Fiery Pileup in New Jersey: Police," Brian Thompson, Dec. 22, 2017

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