There’s nothing as heart-wrenching as the loss of a child. In addition to the grief and heartache that results from such a tragedy, there is also the significant financial impact that a sudden death can have on a family. If you have lost a child as the result of someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, there are ways to hold the at-fault parties accountable.
Tragedy struck three Conyers, Georgia area families late last month when a car traveling eastbound on I-20 ran off the road and hit a tree. According to a report from ABC affiliate WJBF Channel 6, investigators believe the car was speeding when the accident took place.
A 30-year-old woman was driving her three children, aged 3, 4 and 6, when her car was struck by one of two vehicles that may have been involved in a street race. Her Sebring was struck by a 2004 Monte Carlo on the passenger side and then it collided with a 2001 GS300 Lexus. According to a news report in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the fatal Atlanta car accident occurred at Moreland Avenue and Constitution Road.
Officials say the 42-year-old driver of the Monte Carlo and the 27-year-old driver of the Lexus were traveling at excessive speeds at the time of the crash. Upon collision with the second vehicle, one of the children was ejected from the Sebring and another was also killed. The 6-year-old and the mother were hospitalized, but are expected to survive. The drivers of the Monte Carlo and Lexus have been charged with vehicular homicide and reckless driving.
A 15-passenger van carrying 12 people drove off a Georgia interstate resulting in the death of three people. According to a news report in The Christian Science Monitor, the fatal van accident occurred along Interstate 85 near Commerce, 65 miles northeast of Atlanta. Officials say the van careened off the interstate and crashed into an embankment. Of the 12 people inside the van, three were killed and at least six were injured. It is unclear what caused the crash or how it could have been prevented.
This fatal crash occurred just a week after another similar van crash resulted in the death of eight members of a Florida church. These types of accidents are relatively common for passenger vans. The accident that took place on April 6 did not involve a blown tire, but many passenger van accidents are the direct result of tire issues and a loss of control. These vehicles are simply not designed to maneuver in the event of an emergency.
In Stone Mountain, a fatal accident occurred involving a mother and a child on Durham Park Road, near the Indian Creek MARTA station. According to authorities, a private utility truck struck a mother who was walking with her child across the street. The mother was killed and the child was transported to a nearby hospital with serious injuries. The scene remains under investigation.
Criminal charges are not expected to be filed in this situation, despite the insufferable harm that was caused by this incident. This may seem especially unjust. However, the offending party can still be held responsible in a civil action which seeks fair compensation for the child’s injuries and the mother’s wrongful death.
The majority of traffic deaths involving pedestrians and bicyclists occur at night. According to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS), 32 percent of all fatal bike and pedestrian accidents happen between 8 p.m. and midnight, and 24 percent occur between midnight and 4 a.m. To combat this issue, local officials are urging all pedestrians and bicyclists to wear bright, reflective gear.
GOHS officials report that there were more than 130 pedestrian fatalities in Georgia in 2012. They accounted for about 11 percent of all traffic deaths that year. In addition to encouraging riders and walkers to wear bright clothes, Georgia officials passed a new law requiring drivers to leave at least three feet of space when passing bicyclists. Riders who have more space will be less likely to crash into the side of a car or lose control for fear of being struck.
A report by CBS Atlanta states that a 13-year-old girl lost her life in a two-vehicle crash on the afternoon of October 20. The tragic incident took place on I-20 near the Fairburn Road exit.
According to police officials, the teenage girl, who was a passenger, and two of her family members were heading west when another vehicle attempted to enter their lane and collided into the side of their vehicle. This caused them to careen off road into a wooded area. Their vehicle struck several trees.
The female driver sustained severe injuries upon ejection from the vehicle. A male passenger suffered non-life-threatening injuries. Both adults were taken to Atlanta Medical Center by air transport.
A 68-year-old man was killed in an Atlanta car accident when a flatbed tow truck struck the vehicle in which he was a passenger. According to a news report in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the fatal truck accident occurred at the intersection of Marietta Street and Northside Drive in northwest Atlanta. Officials say the collision occurred at an intersection, but they have not provided information regarding who was responsible for the accident. The fatally injured Chattanooga man was sitting in the front seat of the sedan. The driver of the sedan and three juveniles in the backseat were transported to a nearby hospital. The tow truck driver was not injured.
Intersections are some of the most common locations for serious injury accidents. Common causes of Atlanta intersection accidents include:
Two months ago, a 24-year-old man with a history of reckless driving was determined to have been responsible for the death of a 70-year-old woman. According to a My Fox Atlanta news report, the driver who officials said was at fault has still not been arrested for the fatal crash, and the victim’s family is pleading for justice. Officials say the woman was fatally injured on State Route 101 in Carroll County when the driver of a pickup clipped another truck, went airborne, and landed on top of the victim’s vehicle on the other side of the road.
The victim’s family is still left wondering as to why the at-fault driver, who has been previously arrested or cited for reckless driving and speeding about a dozen times, has not been arrested yet in connection with their loved one’s death. According to the Fox 5 news report, if the driver is charged, it will be for a misdemeanor vehicular homicide count because he was not impaired at the time of the crash.
A 12-year-old boy was killed in an Atlanta car accident, which officials say involved an alleged drunk driver. According to an Associated Press news report, the fatal DUI crash occurred in southwest Atlanta. Officials say the boy was crossing the street when the car struck him. The 43-year-old driver has been accused of striking the boy and fleeing the scene of the crash. The driver has been arrested and charged with vehicular homicide, DUI, leaving the scene of an accident, failure to yield, failure to maintain lane, driving on a suspended license, and reckless driving.
According to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, there were 1,493 fatalities suffered in Georgia car accidents in the year 2008 and 416 of those fatalities were alcohol-related. Of the 1,021 drivers killed in Georgia car accidents during that same year, 331 had a recorded blood alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.00, 31 had a BAC less than .08, and 207 had a BAC greater than .08. These numbers may not reflect the total number of fatally injured drunk drivers because 43 percent of all drivers killed were not tested for alcohol consumption.
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