California Highway Patrol said 2 children and their mother were killed and 2 others injured earlier this week when the van they were travelling in near Los Angeles County's Willowbrook area crashed into a vehicle being driven by a 32-year-old male suspected of drunk driving. The motor vehicle accident happened in the early morning hours when the 32-year-old was driving southbound on Mona Boulevard at a "high rate of speed" when his vehicle struck the van carrying 4 passengers.
The van was hit when its driver attempted to make a left turn off 119th street onto northbound Mona Boulevard, according to the CHP crash report. The crash caused the van to overturn onto its right side ejecting a 7-year-old child who died at the scene from head trauma. A 3-year-old child was found dead inside the van due to head injuries. The child's mother was also ejected and died at the hospital, also due to head trauma, according to the coroner's office.
The driver and a 1-year-old passenger in the van were transported to the hospital and treated for moderate head injuries. The driver of the other vehicle reportedly broke an ankle in the crash and tried to flee the scene on foot before he was arrested near the crash site. He has been charged with felony hit and run, suspicion of driving under the influence and could possibly be facing charges of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, according to police.
Drunk driving is a serious problem in this country and accidents caused by drunk drivers is a leading cause of not only death, but also personal injury and wrongful death claims. Although the accident is still under investigation, the surviving family members of those killed in the crash could possibly pursue both wrongful death claims for all 3 family members, as well as personal injury lawsuits for the injured individuals.
It is a sad event to consider that a 1-year-old has lost his mother, and although no amount of money can ease the pain of loss, a wrongful death suit could result in compensation for damages that might make the family's transition through such a tragic time just a little easier in knowing that justice has been served.
Source: Daily Breeze, "UPDATED: 2 children, mother killed in collision with suspected drunk driver in Willowbrook," May 29, 2012