A 35-year-old mother of three died last year when the vehicle she was driving was struck head on by a Tennessee man who is now facing multiple charges in the case, including driving under the influence. According to news sources, the woman, her three minor children and a man were headed east for a family vacation in a 2006 Dodge Caravan when the fatal accident occurred. The four other people in the van were injured in the crash, and some of those injuries were reported to be life-threatening.
The accident occurred on December 1, 2012, just east of the Newport 435 mile marker on Interstate 40. The van carrying the Toledo, Ohio family was traveling eastbound when it was struck head on by a 2007 Mercury Mountaineer. According to a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper, the 39-year-old man who was behind the wheel was driving in the wrong lanes.
On July 15, 2013, the driver of the Mountaineer was arraigned in a Tennessee courtroom. A presentment containing 10 charges, including a DUI, was issued by the state. The man's attorney has reported that after being taken to the county jail for the arraignment, the man was released on a $25,000 bond. No further information regarding the condition of the surviving victims was reported by media sources. However, as the legal process unfolds, the family could choose to file a wrongful death or personal injury claim.
DUI penalties are severe, especially when a life has been lost due to impaired driving. For the survivors who must deal with the loss of a loved one, pain, emotional trauma and financial hardship, these penalties offer small comfort. Tennessee residents who have suffered loss as the result of the negligence of another may benefit by seeking the advice of an experienced attorney. An attorney may be able to help clients gain the compensation that will give them the solid financial footing they may need as they begin to recover from a life-altering accident.
Source: Newport Plain Talk, "Driver in fatal crash indicted", Nelson Morais, July 16, 2013