When a driver agrees to take passengers in a vehicle, that driver has a legal responsibility to ensure the safety of those passengers. If a passenger is injured, or worse, as a result of the recklessness, carelessness or negligence of a driver, the passenger, or the family of the passenger, may have legal cause to pursue a civil action against the driver. One recent fatal accident in New York may very well fall under the legal realm of wrongful death.
A 17-year-old boy was a passenger in the car that is believed to have caused the accident. As the car traveled down a highway in early March, the car collided with another car. Due to the impact, the driver apparently lost control of the vehicle, and the car left the roadway, hitting a tree in the process. The location of the impact was on the passenger side of the car.
The car that was hit was launched onto its roof on the other side of the road as a result of the collision. The people in that vehicle only suffered minor injuries, and they were transported to the hospital. The 17-year-old passenger in the first car died as a result of the crash. Investigators at the scene reported that there is reason to believe that speed was a factor in the fatal car accident.
When New York drivers face any kind of citations or criminal charges related to a fatal accident, the evidence presented in court to support those charges can serve to strengthen any wrongful death civil suits filed because of the accidents. The families of deceased passengers may be awarded compensation in successful civil suits. In those cases, the compensation may assist families as they face unexpected expenses stemming from accidents.
Source: New York Daily News, "17-year-old Queens boy dies in car crash on Northern State Parkway in Hempstead Friday night", Barry Paddock, March 7, 2015