Tractor Trailer Accidents in Massachusetts Kill One, Cause Traffic Headaches

A Massachusetts woman was killed after a backhoe rolled off a tractor trailer and landed on the minivan she was riding in on Interstate 495.Police are investigating the cause of two separate tractor trailer accidents in Massachusetts, one which killed a woman in her 70s, the other which caused delays for weekend travelers.

In Southboro, a woman was killed and three other people were injured after a backhoe fell off of a trailer and struck a minivan on Interstate 495 on August 12.

The Worcester Telegram and Gazette reports that the accident occurred around 1:15 p.m. when a 2007 Case backhoe, which was being towed by a National Grid Freightliner semi during a test run, rolled off the right side of the highway and landed on top of the minivan.

Massachusetts State Police told the news agency that the impact of the crash caused both the big rig and van to veer off the roadway and into a nearby wooded area.

A passenger in the the van, Xjaoyun Jiang of Westford, was reportedly pronounced dead at the scene. The 42-year-old driver of the vehicle and two children were injured in the crash.

The driver of the truck was not injured in the accident.

In Attleboro, a tractor trailer rollover on August 14 caused heavy traffic tie ups for weekend commuters traveling on Interstate 295 north.

The Attleboro Sun Chronicle reports that the rollover occurred around 8:15 a.m. on the ramp from 295 to Interstate 95 north.

State officials told the news source that the ramp was shut down for several hours while work crews cleared the wreckage. They said the accident contributed to hefty delays in the area, which was already busy with people who were taking advantage of a rare Massachusetts tax-free shopping weekend.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 334 people died as the result of motor vehicle accidents in Massachusetts in 2009.