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Car accidents may stem from negligence, mechanical failure

Four men tragically lost their lives in a single-car accident in New York. The accident took place on a recent Wednesday morning. These types of fatal car accidents sometimes happen due to the negligence of the driver, in which case the driver may be held liable for the victims' deaths.

Police said a 19-year-old woman was driving the car. However, she did not successfully make a sharp turn at a road intersection. The car ended up on a private drive before going 110 feet over an embankment. The car then struck a house and landed on its roof.

The driver and four passengers in the car with her were trapped inside the vehicle; the driver suffered a spinal injury was taken to the hospital; however, all of her passengers passed away in the wreck. The impact of the crash was so major that it caused pipes in the home to fracture, thus leading to a flooded basement. Police were not sure if the collision was due to criminal activity, mechanical problems or human error. It was also unclear whether or not the vehicle was going faster than 30 mph, which was the speed limit in the village area where the crash occurred. Those who died, all of whom had been co-workers, ranged in age from 22 to 26.

The family members of the deceased passengers may decide to file wrongful death claims against the driver, seeking damages. Competent proof of negligence is necessary to prevail in this type of civil case in New York. In addition, if the accident is determined to have been the result of mechanical issues, a lawsuit may be filed against the manufacturer of the vehicle or vehicle part that failed. A court will decide claims for damages only if liability is established to its satisfaction in cases involving car accidents.

Source: NBC New York, "4 Young Co-Workers Killed When Car Plunges Down Embankment in New York", Aug. 27, 2015

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