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Taxi Passenger Killed in Head-On Collision Involving Drunk Driver

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. on March 11, 2014

A 34-year-old Tacoma woman has been killed in a Washington car accident, which officials believe involved an impaired driver. According to a KOMO news report, the fatal drunk driving accident collision occurred on Highway 167 south of 44th Street East in Tacoma. Officials say the 48-year-old male driver of a Dodge pickup was under the influence of drugs or alcohol when his vehicle crashed head-on with the taxi.

The woman in the back of the taxi was killed, her 36-year-old boyfriend was treated at a nearby hospital, and the 52-year-old taxi driver sustained severe injuries that required multiple surgeries. The driver of the pickup sustained only minor injuries that did not require hospitalization. He was arrested and booked.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 145 alcohol-related traffic deaths in Washington State in 2012. The number represented 33 percent of all traffic deaths statewide. To deter drivers from driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and/or drugs, Washington imposes strict penalties.

Under Washington Law, drivers can be charged with vehicular homicide if a person dies as a result of the negligent operation of a car. Motorists convicted of vehicular homicide can face years of incarceration. A conviction will not, however, automatically result in financial compensation for the victim’s family.

The family of someone killed in a Washington car accident can seek financial support for their loss by filing a wrongful death claim against the at-fault driver. A successful wrongful death claim can result in financial compensation for medical and funeral costs, loss of future income, pain and suffering, and other damages. No amount of money can bring back a beloved family member, but a successful wrongful death claim can help a family attain justice and peace.

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