A Connecticut man died on Wednesday, December 12, 2012, when his vehicle collided with a tractor trailer in a rest stop off of Interstate 95. The tractor trailer was allegedly parked illegally in a “no parking” area, where the driver had stopped to rest. Accidents like this are not uncommon in Connecticut and the New England region, and they are often fatal for drivers unlucky enough to hit a parked truck. Federal trucking regulations set strict limits on where drivers may park their rigs, as well as limiting the number of hours drivers may be on the road.
The tractor trailer had pulled onto the left shoulder of the rest area entrance ramp, which was located on the southbound side of I-95 in Fairfield, just south of Exit 21. According to the Connecticut Post, the area was clearly marked as a “no parking” area. The truck driver later told police that he had pulled over so he could rest in the truck's sleeper berth. Although the rest area has designated parking spaces for commercial trucks, they are frequently full. The victim, driving a Nissan Sentra, reportedly exited I-95 for the rest area at about 10:50 p.m., collided with the right rear of the trailer, and hit the left side of an SUV that had entered the rest area just after it. The Sentra came to rest under the truck, and emergency responders pronounced the driver dead at the scene. The drivers of the tractor trailer and the SUV were not injured.
Less than twelve hours after the accident, according to the Post, another commercial truck was parked illegally in almost the same spot. Accidents involving vehicles striking parked tractor trailers seem to be quite common. On December 1, 2012, a truck driver pulled into a rest area along northbound I-95. Reports do not indicate if the truck was parked illegally. A Toyota Corolla entered the rest area, somehow rolled over and became airborne, and collided with the cab of the truck. The truck driver died from his injuries. The driver and occupant of the Corolla were not seriously injured. An accident in Bridgeport in August 2012 involved a truck that had parked on the right shoulder of northbound Route 25. A car drifted off the highway at about 5:00 a.m. on August 26 and collided with the parked truck, killing the car's driver and passenger.