Nearly every driver has become frustrated with a slower driver in front of him or her at some point. On many two-lane roadways, passing can only occur when it is safe and legal. Unfortunately, some drivers fail to wait for the way to be clear, safe and legal before they begin passing the vehicle or vehicles in front of them. This action could easily result in catastrophic car accidents involving serious or deadly injuries.
For example, the Ohio State Highway Patrol recently responded to the scene of a four-vehicle crash on State Route 173. Shortly before 6 a.m. on a Thursday morning, a westbound vehicle began passing the slower vehicle in front of it. The driver’s attempt was illegal since it was over a double yellow line on the crest of the hill. Perhaps predictably, other vehicles were headed right toward his vehicle from the opposite direction.
Two of the vehicles collided head-on, and the westbound vehicle then slammed into the other westbound vehicle, which ended up in a ditch. When these three vehicles came to a rest, a fourth vehicle headed eastbound over the crest of the hill collided with the wreckage of the passing westbound vehicle. The driver of that vehicle died, and the driver of the vehicle it initially collided with suffered severe injuries.
The seriously injured driver may pursue restitution for the financial losses associated with the crash. As is the case in other car accidents in which the at-fault driver dies, the personal injury claim may be filed against the decedent’s estate. Otherwise, the progression of the claim essentially remains the same as any other in an Ohio civil court.