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Wrong-way driver blamed in fatal Sacramento accident

Sacramento Police say they think drugs or alcohol may have played a role in a wrong way accident on eastbound Interstate 80 that left three people dead early Saturday morning.

The tragedy occurred when a 24-year-old Roseville man was traveling the wrong way on I-80 around 2:10 a.m. and crashed into another vehicle head-on. Police said what made the situation even more precarious was the fact that the Roseville man’s vehicle was black and its headlights were not on. 

The other vehicle, a Buick, contained three people -- a 20-year-old Roseville man, an 18-year-old Granite Bay woman, and an 18-year-old man -- who were said to be on their way home from a concert when the accident occurred. All three were killed upon impact, the California Highway Patrol said.

The wrong-way driver was taken to Mercy San Juan hospital for treatment and he is expected to survive his injuries. Undoubtedly, the wrong-way driver will have plenty of legal issues to deal with after he recovers. He will not only likely face criminal charges, but wrongful death claims are also a possibility.

Wrongful death claims arise when a family member is killed as a result of the negligence (or criminal behavior) on behalf of another person or entity. Surviving beneficiaries of the deceased person are sometimes entitled to damages to compensate them for their loss.

When fatal accidents are the result of drunk driving or other criminal behavior, surviving beneficiaries may be entitled to punitive damages in addition to compensatory damages.

Of course no amount of damages could ever fully compensate a family for the tragic loss of a loved one, but damages can help support a family financially as they face this difficult time.

Source: KCRA.com, “CHP: Roseville man driving wrong way kills 3 on I-80,” Sarah Heise, Jan. 11, 2014

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