An auto wreck lawyer notes that officials believe alcohol played a role in a car accident that took the lives of three people. Officials state that open containers and a strong smell of alcohol indicate that driving under the influence was a likely factor in the fatal Utah car crash. Officers at the scene stated that it was possible that one of the vehicles did not stop at a red light and crashed into another car, killing the occupants of both vehicles. In addition to criminal charges, people who drive under the influence may be liable to the others they harm, and victims of negligence, as well as the families of those killed, may be eligible to recover compensation with the help of a car accident lawyer.
For more information, contact Attorney Group. We offer free, confidential, no obligation consultations. We can help answer your questions, and if you choose to pursue a case we can connect you with affiliated auto wreck lawyer who can assist you throughout the legal process.
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Report: Both Vehicles Ended Up a Hundred Feet from Point of Impact
Though toxicology test results are still pending, law enforcement officials in Clearfield, Utah, have reason to believe alcohol was a factor in a deadly crash that claimed three lives. According to Fox 13 Salt Lake City, authorities who arrived on the scene of the accident noted the smell of alcohol emanating from the vehicle of the driver believed to be at fault. Open containers of alcohol were also visible inside.
The collision occurred when a driver in a 2003 Grand Prix plowed into another vehicle, a Kia Sedona, at a high rate of speed after he allegedly failed to stop at a red light. Both passengers in the Sedona, a 34-year-old woman and a 37-year-old man, had to be extracted from their vehicle using the Jaws of Life, but unfortunately, neither survived. The driver of the Grand Prix, a 30-year-old, also perished in the crash. The force of the collision was strong enough to cause both vehicles to end up more than 100 feet from the initial point of impact, according to law enforcement officials.
Criminal Liability for Drunk Driving Accidents is Different Than Civil Liability
Regardless of the outcome of any criminal action against a driver involved in a drunk driving case, the determination of the criminal court is different than any civil case that may be brought against the driver. In a criminal matter, a person is accused of a crime and, if convicted, can be sentenced to jail or probation. Sometimes monetary fines and restitution are imposed on the guilty party.
However, the outcome of a criminal matter is often not relevant to a civil matter that could be brought against the person committing the wrongful act. A person who drives drunk commits a crime, but if that person also injures or kills another person while driving drunk, he or she may face civil liability in addition to criminal charges.
In a civil case, a person’s actions are not judged on whether they were illegal, but instead on whether they constituted negligence, reckless or malicious behavior, or other fault. If those actions are found to constitute fault, and if those actions caused injury to another person, then the wrongful actor may be held liable to the injured party for the payment of money to compensate for the injuries and other damages caused.
How an Auto Wreck Lawyer Can Help
Drivers or passengers who are injured in car accidents may be entitled to compensation for damages resulting from their injuries, including:
- Pain and suffering
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
The families of those killed may be eligible to recover money for funeral expenses and the pain that comes with losing a loved one.
If the actions causing injury are malicious or so reckless that intent to harm can be inferred, the responsible party can be liable for punitive damages to punish wrongful conduct and deter similar conduct in the future.
The Time You Have to Pursue a Claim is Limited. Contact Us Today.
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Please note that the law limits the time you have to pursue a claim or file a lawsuit for an injury. If you think you have a case, you should not delay taking action.