New York residents may not be aware that almost one-third of all fatal accidents on the roads are the result of people driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. A drunk driver often acts irresponsibly by speeding and weaving in and out of traffic. Their reactions are sometimes slower than that of sober drivers and prevent them from reacting to traffic signals and emergency situations properly.
Police were called to the scene of an accident in the early morning hours on a recent Saturday. A 24-year-old man who was a passenger in the vehicle lost his life in the accident. There were not many details available regarding the circumstances of the accident, but police reported finding a vehicle that seemed to have crashed into a tree. The two occupants in the car had to be extricated by mechanical equipment, and both passengers were transported to a hospital.
The male passenger was sadly declared dead at the hospital, while the female driver was transferred to another hospital due to the severity of her injuries. The media report made no mention of blood alcohol levels but reported that the female driver was apparently charged with drunk driving and released on $75,000 bail. A detective division and reconstruction team are continuing the investigation into the accident.
Residents who have lost loved ones in a car accident that was caused by an alleged drunk driver retain the right to file wrongful death claims in a New York civil court. In cases such as this, evidence of the driver's negligence and significant contribution to the death of the victim will have to be presented. In successfully litigated cases, the court may award monetary damages to the family of the deceased. In certain circumstances, additional damages may be awarded as deemed appropriate under state law.
Source: duiblotter.com, "Woman charged with DWI in fatal crash", , April 23, 2014