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Washington man that fatally struck teen is charged

Washington residents know how dangerous it can be for pedestrians who traverse the busy roads along with cars, trucks and buses. Unfortunately, pedestrians are highly vulnerable to suffering from serious and sometimes catastrophic injuries if struck by a car.

King County residents may recall a tragic accident that occurred on Halloween. A 16-year-old teen who was walking on the side of the road with his 15-year-old girlfriend was fatally struck. The man who hit the teen was reportedly driving while under the influence of marijuana and oxycodone.

That 20-year-old man has now been charged with vehicular homicide. Reports of the incident also seem to indicate that cellphone use may have contributed to the accident. The driver allegedly admitted to taking his eyes off the road when he answered a ringing cellphone.

The teenage couple was just walking on the side of the road and the deceased had reportedly insisted on switching places with his girlfriend, so he was closest to the road. According to the reports, the 16-year-old teen died at the scene of the accident.

Distracted driving and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol are common causes of horrific accidents such as this one. Although no amount of money can replace the loss of a life, family members of a victim may be entitled to seek compensation for their loss by filing a wrongful death action in court.

In a wrongful death action, one may be entitled to receive compensation for loss of companionship, loss of future earnings, loss of consortium and other damages. It may also be possible to seek additional punitive damages.

Source: seattlepi.com, "Charge: High driver killed teen pedestrian," Levi Pulkkinen, March 13, 2013

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