A 29-year-old passenger died in an automobile accident Nov. 24 in Hammond, according to authorities. The 29-year-old woman from Minooka, Illinois, was one of four occupants of a vehicle that collided with another car that crossed into oncoming traffic at about 2:14 a.m. Two other passengers in the deceased victim’s car sustained serious injuries that could be life-threatening.
Police did not release much information about the identity of the drivers of the two vehicles involved in the car accident death other than to report that each of them had sustained non-life threatening injuries. According to the police, the use of alcohol may have contributed to the accident. No information was offered as to the identity of the driver who might have been under the influence or the person’s blood alcohol level following the auto accident.
Lawyers understand that the consumption of alcohol might play a role in causing an automobile accident, but it is the actions of the driver in maintaining control over a vehicle that are important. The use of alcohol does not in itself prove that the person who was drinking and got behind the wheel of a car was responsible for causing an accident or the injuries that might result. If an individual’s blood alcohol level was over the legal limit, however, some courts may deem that per se negligence, and it can have a substantial impact on the outcome of a civil claim.
Proving that a driver is responsible for the death or injuries caused in an auto accident requires proof that the person was negligent in operating his or her motor vehicle. Negligence is a deviation from the standard of care associated with the act of driving a car. If the driver who cased the accident was impaired to the extent that he or she could be deemed negligent per se, the victims or deceased victim’s family may be able to recover damages from that person or his or her insurance company through a settlement.
Source: The Herald News, “Minooka woman dead, four others wounded after Hammond crash,” Nov. 25, 2013