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Fatal New Jersey accident could lead to wrongful death claim

There are inherent dangers associated with driving or riding in a motor vehicle. Fortunately, certain precautions can help reduce the chances of being involved in an accident, including declining to drive while under the influence of alcohol. Despite the attempts to educate the general public about the dangers of drinking and driving, some in New Jersey continue to engage in the dangerous behavior. In a case that could ultimately result in a wrongful death lawsuit, a police officer now faces multiple charges related to a fatal crash in which alcohol is believed to have been a factor.

Official reports indicate that the accident happened in Sept. 2016. Police claim that a 25-year-old off-duty police officer lost control of the vehicle he was driving at approximately 2 a.m. As a result, the car is said to have slammed into a pole. A 27-year-old female passenger died at the scene.

The investigation into the accident allegedly revealed that the driver consumed excessive amounts of alcohol prior to the accident. He now faces multiple charges, including vehicular homicide, driving while intoxicated and reckless driving, among several others. In addition to alcohol, police say that excessive speed also played a factor. He has since been suspended without pay, pending the outcome of the charges.

Unfortunately, the decision to drink and drive often has devastating impacts on the lives of all involved. While the New Jersey driver faces jail time, the family of the deceased woman must cope with her unexpected death. Often, those grieving such a loss also find themselves struggling with the financial ramifications of their loss as well. In order to pursue some relief from these consequences, a wrongful death lawsuit may be appropriate. If negligence can be proved, surviving family members could receive a financial award to help them cope with the financial consequences of their loss.

Source: nj.com, "N.J. cop charged with vehicular homicide, DWI in fatal crash", Cristina Rojas, Oct. 20, 2016

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