The Golden State has millions of motor vehicles on the roads each day, and accidents can happen even though the roads are generally safe. Some risk factors can increase the chances of an accident, such as low visibility or distracted driving.
Few hazards are more dangerous, however, than driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A recent accident that killed a toll worker and injured at least half a dozen motorists on the Bay Bridge in Oakland may have been the result of substance abuse while driving.
A 32-year-old man from Foster City has been charged in Alameda County with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and six counts of felony DUI causing injury after California Highway Patrol officers detected the smell of alcohol and marijuana on him after he plowed a box truck into a toll plaza.
Paramedics who cared for the injured driver concurred with the officers’ suspicion and reportedly heard a confession from the driver during treatment. A 46-year-old toll collector was killed, and the truck’s passenger was injured as well as five other drivers on the scene. Family members of the deceased are raising money online to pay for funeral expenses.
Victims of truck accidents in which a truck driver was at fault have rights protecting their ability to seek restitution from the parties who caused injuries or deaths. This may include reimbursement of medical expenses and lost wages, as well as compensation for pain and emotional distress. An attorney may be able to help claimants determine the best way forward in this pursuit.
Source: NBC Bay Area, “Suspect in Fatal Bay Bridge Truck Crash Charged With DUI, Manslaughter,” Dec. 12, 2017