The dangers of drinking and driving are well-known. Despite the publicity advertising the potential dangers that intoxicated drivers create for themselves and others around them, drivers in California and across the country still make the decision to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol. Unfortunately, police believe that alcohol may have been a factor in a recent fatal accident that could lead to wrongful death claims.
The fatal incident happened just before 1 a.m. on a day in early January. According to reports, a 30-year-old man was driving on a California freeway when he rear-ended another vehicle. The first car continued on, striking a pickup truck in the rear. The truck turned on its side and skidded across all lanes of traffic, ultimately striking another vehicle and a guardrail before coming to a rest.
Unfortunately, a 9-year-old girl riding as a passenger in a rear seat of the pickup truck died at the scene of the accident. A second victim, a 33-year-old woman, was transported to the hospital, but she later passed away from injuries suffered in the collision; it is unclear in which vehicle she was traveling. Police claim that the driver of the first vehicle displayed signs of being under the influence, prompting officers to conduct an alcohol evaluation. The driver was then taken into custody, suspected of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and felony drunk driving.
The surviving family members of the two deceased victims are now starting the new year in grief due to an accident that was likely preventable. While they come to terms with their emotional loss, they may also realize that the medical bills, funeral expenses and lost wages associated with such a loss have left them unable to meet their financial responsibilities. As a result, surviving family members of accidents such as this often choose to file a wrongful death lawsuit. If they can prove that their loss was the result of another’s negligence, they could receive a financial award to help them with these expenses. While it will likely do little to reduce their grief, the financial security a verdict in their favor could provide will allow them to focus on their recovery.