Intoxicated drivers are a danger to everyone on the roadways. They have slower reaction times, have a harder time paying attention and make poor judgment calls. While anyone can be hurt by a person driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, motorcyclists are at an increased risk of serious injuries. As most Washington residents understand, motorcycles provide virtually no protection to their riders, and helmets can only go so far to keep people safe. Sadly, many motorcycle accidents are deadly.
Recently, a Washington woman was arrested for vehicular homicide following a deadly motorcycle crash. According to reports, the woman was approaching a set of red lights in mid-April when she failed to slow down. In order to avoid the cars at the red light, the woman veered off to one side and hit a motorcycle that was also waiting for the light.
Police claim that the woman hit the rear of the motorcycle while traveling between 50 and 55 miles per hour. The 54-year-old motorcyclist was thrown from his bike as a result of the collision. Reports indicate that he suffered from serious head injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. Following the accident, the woman claimed that her brakes were not working.
However, the police investigation showed that the car was mechanically sound. Furthermore, the investigation uncovered that the woman was high on methamphetamine at the time of the accident. In addition to the vehicular homicide charge, the woman is also facing charges for DUI and driving with a suspended license.
In cases like this one, motorcyclists and their families have legal options. A personal injury lawsuit could hold an intoxicated driver financially responsible for the accident. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is negligent, and in civil court negligent drivers can be forced to pay for expenses that arise from an accident. This includes compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, funeral costs and pain and suffering.
Source: KPTV, "Police: Woman who hit motorcyclist in deadly crash was on meth," Paul Craig, July 10, 2014