A 15-year-old boy who was walking on Route 309 in Hatfield with some friends was hit by a drunk driver who was allegedly texting as she drove. According to police, the woman, whose blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit for Pennsylvania, drove away after the accident and continued to text her aunt. The 31-year-old driver has been charged with driving under the influence, homicide by vehicle and other charges related to the accident.
The 15-year-old boy died from the injuries caused by the hit and run accident. Another one of his friends suffered a broken elbow. The boy’s 16-year-old sister said that she, at first, did not believe her brother had been killed.
This case can fall under the wrongful death category since the boy’s death was a result of the accident caused by the woman’s behavior. A loved one’s accidental death can change a the family’s life permanently. As with other cases of wrongful death, the family of the deceased might be left to deal with emotional and financial consequences that could have been prevented if different choices had been made.
In this case, the charges against the woman indicate that there was negligence on her part due to her blood alcohol level and to her behavior. This could be used to support a wrongful death case if the family chose to pursue this option. While it is impossible to prepare for this type of accidental death, families can seek compensations for these injuries to help them deal with the trauma they have experienced as a result of the death. A lawyer can provide additional guidance to the families on how to proceed in this type of situation.
Source: NBC Philadelphia, “Driver Still Texting After Accident That Killed Teen: Pros.,” Lauren DiSanto, May 25, 2013