A collision between a passenger vehicle and a tractor-trailer in west Jefferson County, Alabama, Monday, Feb. 13, killed two siblings and left two surviving siblings fighting for their lives in Birmingham hospitals.
Jefferson County sheriff’s Chief Deputy Randy Christian told AL.com that the crash occurred around 8 a.m. on Highway 269 near the intersection of Short Creek Road, which is in the Mulga community.
The four siblings were the only occupants of the car. Nine-year-old Michael Scoggins was pronounced dead at the scene. His 17-year-old sister, Meagan Scoggins, was pronounced dead later at an area hospital.
Katie Scoggins, 19, the oldest sister and the driver of the vehicle, was admitted to UAB hospital in critical condition. Donna Scoggins, 15, was listed in critical condition at UAB Hospital in Birmingham.
The cause of the crash remains under investigation. The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department reported that the car and the 18-wheeler were traveling in opposite directions on Alabama 269 when the car turned across the highway in front of the commercial truck.
Although authorities investigating the crash haven’t disclosed any details, potential causes traffic-crash investigators typically look for include driver distraction, such as texting and driving or other use of a smartphone or electronic device; driver error; fatigue, which could cause the driver to fall asleep behind the wheel; health of the driver, especially some medical condition that could cause the driver to lose consciousness; drug or alcohol use; driver error; weather and road conditions; and mechanical problems that could have caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
“This accident obviously has devastated a family,” Christian told AL.com. “It will be heart-wrenching for the family, friends and everyone in the community. Our hearts are with them. God wrap your loving arms around this family as they deal with this unimaginable heartbreak.”