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August 29, 2014

Motorcyclists Fatally Injured in Easthampton, MA Crash

Police from Easthampton, MA are reporting that two individuals were fatally injured while traveling north on their motorcycle. The motorcycle, which had been traveling north, was struck by an oncoming car heading southbound.

According to police reports, 45-year-old James Ainsworth of Springfield, MA crossed the center line on Route 5 yesterday and struck the couple on their bike. News reports indicate that Ainsworth was scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon at the Northwestern district attorney’s office.

MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that approximately 81,000 people were injured and 4,612 were killed in motorcycle accidents in 2011 in the United States; a 2% increase from the number in 2010 and a 41% increase from 2002. Motorcycle accidents make up an estimated 14% of the total number of motor-vehicle crashes in the United States each year. The United States watchdog estimates that per every vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclist and motorcycle passengers are 30 times more likely than passenger car occupants to be killed in an accident, and 5 times more likely to be injured during an accident.

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April 28, 2014

Car Accident Fatalities Increased in 2012, NHTSA Data Confirms

Despite monumental improvements in vehicle safety, the United States Department of Transportation’s National Highway traffic Safety Administration reports that traffic fatalities increased in 2012 for the first time since 2005. The number of car accident fatalities rose to 33,561, which was 1,082 more than the previous year. Data shows that the large majority of these fatalities occurred in the first quarter of the year and mainly involved motorcycle and pedestrian incidents.

The NHTSA notes that despite the fact that the number of accident-related deaths rose in 2012, “highway deaths over the last five years remain at historic lows.” Even factoring in the small jump in 2012, the fatalities are still consistent with those of the year 1950. Early data analysis from 2013 indicates fatality numbers have fallen once again.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx released a statement explaining, “Highway deaths claim more than 30,000 lives each year and while we've made substantial progress over the past 50 years, it's clear that we have much more work to do. As we look to the future, we must focus our efforts to tackle persistent and emerging issues that threaten the safety of motorists, cyclists and pedestrians across the nation.”

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April 22, 2014

Fiery Accident Turns Fatal on the Zakim Bridge

A tragedy occurred in the early hours of the morning on Marathon Monday. Debra Sarno, a 54-year-old taxi driver from Chelsea was killed when a tractor trailer slammed into her cab on the right travel lane on Route 93, and burst into flames. The accident occurred on the Zakim Bridge, a towering monument in the shadow of a city getting ready to run the most meaningful marathon to date in just a few short hours. Flames and plumes of smoke could be seen billowing high into the air as both the taxi and the truck were completely engulfed.

According to WCVB, “Firefighters rushed to help, but the fire proved too intense. By the time the vehicles were towed away, neither were recognizable. Both burned down to the metal.”

The exact cause of the accident remains unclear at this time, but investigators are particularly focused on why Sarno was stopped in the right travel line in the middle of early morning traffic. It is thought that her 2006 Ford Crown Victoria could have stalled, leaving her in an extremely dangerous spot. The Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office says it is still trying to figure out how the tractor trailer carrying a full load of produce hit her. The investigation will prove to be difficult as there was little left of the car and truck when the fire was finally put out, around 7 am.

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April 7, 2014

US DOT Aims New 'Don't Text and Drive' Commercial at Distracted Drivers

It can happen in a split second, with no warning. It can happen to anyone, and it could change your life. The new “Don’t Text and Drive” commercial put out by the United States Department of Transportation aims to shock drivers—especially teenagers—into putting their phones down and paying attention to the road. Distracted driving has become an epidemic in recent years as cell phones, tablets, and other devices have come on the market. Teenagers are especially susceptible to the effects of distracted driving because of their inexperience behind the wheel combined with an almost rabid attachment to their cell phones.

The commercial pinpoints the teenage and young adult audience with the slogan, "U drive. U text. U pay," with the hashtag #justdrive. It features a group of young women traveling in a car on a seemingly normal day. They are seen talking and laughing as the driver becomes distracted by her phone and misses a stop sign. In an instant, they are struck by an oncoming truck in the intersection. The extremely jarring scene unfolds as the car flips over multiple times before coming to rest.

In perhaps the most poignant scene, a police officer stands beside the wreckage and explains, “Nobody likes to be stopped by police, but if I’d seen her texting while driving and given her a ticket, it just might have saved her life.” The shocking images are meant to jolt teens into understanding the reality and consequences of texting while driving at point in their lives when they may feel invincible.

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December 27, 2013

Driver Inattentiveness Possible Cause of Fatal New Hampshire Car Accident

After a preliminary investigation, New Hampshire officials have concluded that neither speed nor alcohol were factors in Tuesday morning’s fatal crash.

While the incident remains under investigation, Brookline Police Chief William Quigley said that excessive speed and intoxication have been ruled out as possible causes, however “driver inattentiveness” remains the most likely factor of the three-car accident that killed one person.

The accident occurred when a female driver who was trying to take a left hand turn was rear-ended and pushed into traffic, causing an oncoming car to strike her car.
Unfortunately this accident is an example of a distracted driving accident. Accidents caused by driver inattention account for nearly one fifth (18%) of all motor vehicle collisions in the United States. In 2011, 3,331 people were killed and 387,000 people were injured in as the result of driver inattention and distracted driving incidents.

Texting and driving, while against the law, remains a big issue throughout New England. A person who is texting while driving is 23 times more likely to get into an accident than someone who is not distracted. According to the Ad Council, 5 seconds is the average time a person’s eyes are taken off the road while texting. At 55mph, that’s the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field, blind!
Texting is not the only type of distraction people face while driving, and there are three other types of distractions including visual: taking eyes off of the road; manual: taking hands off of the wheel; cognitive: taking mind off of driving (e.g.; day dreaming).

Some Common Examples of Distracted Driving Include:
• Cellphone or smartphone use

• Eating or drinking

• Talking to passengers

• Daydreaming

• Grooming

• Reading, including maps

• Using a navigation system

• Watching a video

• Adjusting the radio

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October 15, 2013

Middleborough Authorities Continue Search for Driver of Fatal Hit-and-Run Accident

Authorities in Middleborough have released new details in their search for the driver who struck and killed a local bicyclist last week.

Michael Dutra, 58, of Middleborough was the victim of the fatal hit-and-run accident, which occurred around 7 p.m. Friday evening. Authorities believe Dutra was either riding or walking his bicycle along Wood Street, where he resided.

Plymouth Country District Attorney Timothy Cruz, as well as Middleborough’s Chief of Police Bruce Gates, said that investigators of the accident had started to piece the scene together, and have collected debris from what they believe to be a light-colored model year 2005-2009 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Authorities think that the vehicle is possibly missing the front marker lens, may have a broken right headlight lens, as well as a damaged right front bumper. Investigators need your help. Anyone with any information regarding the case is encouraged to contact the Middleborough Police Department at (508) 947-1212.

While bike riding is a popular mode of transportation, it is also extremely dangerous, especially for individuals who choose ride at night. Unlike passengers in motor vehicles, bicyclists have no physical protective barriers against outside elements like cars, trees, guardrails, fences, and other large vehicles, and are at the mercy of others traveling on the road.

bike.jpgThe U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than 500,000 people are treated for serious bicycle-related injuries each year, and more than 700 individuals die each year. A majority of these injuries are head injuries attributed to not wearing a helmet. Though many people dismiss the idea of wearing a helmet because of atheistic reasons, or because they feel their short commute does not warrant wearing one, wearing a helmet could make all the difference, and could even save a life. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that bicycle helmets are 85-88% effective in preventing severe head and brain injuries. Other types of injuries commonly sustained in bicycle accidents include concussions, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, lacerations, paralysis, and death.

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October 9, 2013

No Charges Against Truck Driver Involved in May Bike Accident

Prosecutors will not be pressing charges against the Amherst truck driver who struck and killed a bicyclist last May.

Livingston Pangburn, a Hampshire College student, was fatally injured when he collided with an Amherst College box truck. According to the Northwestern district attorney’s office, Pangburn was traveling in heavy traffic along College Street, and did not stop with the traffic to allow the westbound truck to make a left turn onto the college’s campus.

fast-379343-m.jpgPolice reports stated that the driver of the truck did not see the cyclist in time to stop, and Pangburn was not able to maneuver around the truck in time to avoid the crash. Prosecutors do not believe that any impairment, cell phone use, or mechanical defects with the vehicle played a role in the accident.

While this is undoubtedly a tragic story, it also puts into perspective the dangers cyclists face when riding their bikes. Because bicyclists are extremely vulnerable compared to passengers to a motor vehicles due to their lack of physical barriers to protect themselves, it is crucial for them to do their part to prevent a serious accident from occurring.

5 Tips to Stay Safe on Your Bike

1. Always, always, always wear a helmet. While it seems to be a phrase engrained in everyone’s head, so many individuals do not understand how important helmets are in preventing serious head injuries. Some people dismiss the idea of wearing a helmet because of atheistic reasons, or because they feel their short commute doesn’t warrant wearing one. But wearing a helmet could make all the difference, and could even save a life.

2. Travel with the traffic, not against it. Always ride on the right side of the road, and go with the flow of traffic. Remember that bicycles are considered vehicles too, and cyclists are responsible for adhering to the same rules of the road as drivers. If you come to a stop sign or red light, you are legally bound to stop. In addition, you are responsible for yielding to pedestrians at crosswalks, just as motorists are.

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September 30, 2013

N.H. Lawmakers Seek Changes to Traffic Laws after Fatal Accident

Lawmakers in New Hampshire are considering changes to traffic laws after an unlicensed driver killed two cyclists just hours after she had been pulled over for speeding.

Darriean Hess, 19, was charged with two counts of negligent homicide after she plowed into a group of cyclists, fatally injuring two Massachusetts women, and seriously injuring two others. The cyclists were taking part in an annual charity ride along the New England coastline.

criminal-defense.jpgAccording to police reports, Hess had been stopped on the same road eight hours prior to the fatal accident and had been ticketed for speeding and driving without a license. The officer who had previously pulled Hess over had required her to wait for a licensed driver to pick up her and the vehicle she was driving. Hess is being held on $50,000 bail.

Under the current New Hampshire law, a driver may be charged with a misdemeanor only if he or she has already been cited for operating a vehicle without a license. Representative Renny Cushing, D-Hampton, has filed a bill that would make any violation committed by an unlicensed driver an automatic misdemeanor. If the new bill passed, police would have the option of arresting the driver or issuing a summons. The bill was submitted to New Hampshire police for their recommendations, but no other information on its progress is available.

According to Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 90, Section 23, a person who is found driving while revoked, suspended, or otherwise unlicensed, may be subject to a fine from $500 to $1,000, and imprisoned for not more than 10 days, for the first offense. Subsequent offenses may result in 60 days to one year imprisonment as well as possible extension of suspension of license for an additional 60 days to one year.

While bike riding is a popular mode of transportation, especially in urban areas of Massachusetts, is can be extremely dangerous. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 700 people are killed in bicycle accidents and another 500,000 people are treated annually for bicycle-related injuries. While wearing a helmet can prevent some injuries to the brain, bicyclists are still extremely vulnerable and susceptible to suffering other types of serious injuries, such as neck and spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and even death.

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September 26, 2013

Truck Involved in I-93 Crash Violated Numerous Safety Codes, State Police Inspection Shows

An inspection report by the Maine State Police found that the truck and trailer that caused a fatal accident on Interstate 93 last week had violated safety codes and should have been taken out of service.

Part of the wheel assembly detached from a trailer hauling a modular home traveling southbound in Hooksett, New Hampshire on September 18. According to police, a wheel flew off the trailer, struck a northbound police cruiser, and bounced back into the southbound lane, subsequently striking another car, and killing the driver. The trailer, which belongs to Crawford Homes, Inc. which manufactures modular homes, violated numerous safety protocols.

In the report, State Police found that the trailer’s brakes were “inadequate” for safe stopping, as they were contaminated with grease and oil. In addition, the brake hose on one of the truck’s axels had deteriorated and was scraping against another piece of the truck. State Police reports also showed an issue with the service brake, in that when applied, there was significant air loss from the canister. Finally, the trailer’s remaining wheels had improper emergency braking. Safety records from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration indicate that prior to this incident neither the company’s trucks nor drivers had been involved in an accident in two years.

file000474832304.jpgTrucking companies have a lot at stake, as injuries from these types of accidents often tend to be serious or fatal, as, unfortunately was illustrated in the accident last week. Subsequent to any accident, trucking companies may hire a team of investigators in order to mitigate the liability as well as the legal costs associated with the accident. After an accident occurs, it is imperative for the victim and the victim’s family to seek legal counsel with an experienced attorney. Some of the major causes of these types of accidents include driver fatigue, equipment failure, negligent maintenance, overload or improper loading of truck, driver inattention, non-compliance with federal regulations, and speeding. While it is still under investigation, negligent maintenance and equipment failure seem to be the two most prominent factors in what caused last week’s fatal accident.

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July 2, 2013

Worcester Police Investigate the City’s Third Pedestrian Fatality

Worcester police are investigating a fatal pedestrian accident that left a 67-year old man dead last Friday night.

The victim’s neighbor, Christopher Maider, found the man lying face down in the road around 9:30 p.m. Friday. Police said the victim was crossing the road when he was struck by a 63-year-old female driver. He did not cross at a crosswalk, however. The female driver did stop, and no charges have been filed since the incident.

According to Maider, the street where the incident took place is especially busy, and he said he doesn’t feel safe walking down that street.

“If I went to this crosswalk and stood there, nobody would stop, which is the motor vehicle law. You see somebody in the crosswalk, you are required to stop; that's the law. That'll never happen here,” Maider said.

1369363617t5gfv.jpgSadly, this incident marks the third pedestrian fatality in the city of Worcester, alone, and it serves as a grave reminder to both pedestrians and drivers to be vigilant and safe on the roadways.

Pedestrian accidents account for more than 13% of all traffic fatalities. Pedestrians also make up 3% of all persons injured in motor vehicle accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that a pedestrian is injured every eight minutes and one pedestrian dies every two hours as the result of a traffic accident in the United States.

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June 12, 2013

Seatbelts Could Have Saved 3 BU Students in New Zealand Car Accident, Officials Say

The three Boston University students killed last May when their minivan flipped on a rural New Zealand road, could have survived had they been wearing seatbelts, officials said.

Rotorua, New Zealand Constable Tina Mitchell-Ellis, said that the three students who died, and a fourth who suffered severe brain trauma, were not wearing seatbelts and were thrown from the van. The four other passengers in the van who were wearing seatbelts survived and sustained only minor injuries.

file0001449879863.jpg
The students had all been a part of a study-abroad program in New Zealand and were driving in a rural part New Zealand to begin a scenic hike. According to reports, the driver of the van, Stephen Houseman, became distracted while driving and drove onto the side of the road before over-correcting and flipping the van four times.

Neither drugs nor alcohol were involved in the accident, and police did not suspect Houseman was speeding before the accident. Officials believe that inexperience with driving a van and being unfamiliar with the roads contributed to the accident. Houseman pled guilty to careless driving and had his license suspended for six months.

This tragic accident involving Massachusetts college students is a stark reminder of the dangers of operating a motor vehicle or being a passenger in a motor vehicle, and not wearing a seatbelt. According to both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Safety Council, seatbelts are the most effective safety device for preventing serious injury or death in the event of a car accident. In fact, wearing a safety belt can reduce the risk of serious injury during an accident by more than 50%.

In a study done by the NHTSA, 42% of motor vehicle passengers who were killed in accidents were not wearing a seatbelt. Under Massachusetts law, seatbelt violations fall under secondary enforcement laws; meaning that a driver can be ticketed by an officer for not wearing a seatbelt only if he or she has committed another traffic violation. The seatbelt usage rate in Massachusetts is estimated to be around 74%, which is lower than the National average (88%). However, the NHTSA estimates that over 1,600 lives could be saved and 22,000 injuries prevented each year if seatbelt usage was at 90% in every state.

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February 1, 2013

Driver Hits and Kills Elderly Pedestrian in Peabody, MA

An elderly man was hit and killed as he walked across Lowell Street in Peabody after leaving St. Adelaide Church on Sunday. Theodore Buttner, 87, of Somerville was in town visiting family. “He was coming to visit us,” said Patricia Caton, his daughter. “He thought we were at the church, but we weren’t there. He was on his way to our house.”

The driver, Richard Franco, 84, of Peabody struck Buttner at around 1:00 p.m. with his 2004 Buick LeSabre, Police said. Buttner died later that night at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

Officials have not cited or charged Franco, and are still investigating the incident, said Peabody police Detective Michael Crane. A state police accident reconstruction team is helping to investigate. Officials will not release any additional details about the crash until the investigation is complete, Crane said.

Buttner, who went by the nickname Ted, regularly attended St. Adelaide’s when visiting family, even though he was from out of town. Caton learned her father was at church only after she received a phone call from Peabody police informing her that a car had hit him. “It was devastating,” Caton said.

Butter served in the Navy in World War II, stationed at Pearl Harbor. After that, he worked for the MBTA for 35 years. He was married to his late wife, Theresa, for 57 year. He had five children, seven grandchildren, and a great-granddaughter. “He loved to get together with us as a family,” Caton said. “He enjoyed the holidays and cookouts.” He was a devout Catholic, and met Cardinal Sean O’Malley when he visited St. Adelaide last year, said Canton.

A nurse and many others came to Buttner’s assistance on the day of the accident. “He was never alone; they stayed with him,” she said. “It means a lot to my family that he was not alone when that tragedy occurred.”

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December 14, 2012

MA Judge Allows Lawsuit to Move Forward on Gillette Stadium Fatal Crash

A MA judge has allowed a lawsuit to proceed against the Kraft Group and other companies affiliated with Gillette Stadium.

The lawsuit is the result of a crash that killed Debra Davis, 20 of Milton and Alexa Latteo, 19 of Mansfield, and injured 24-year-old Nina Houlihan. The three women were ordered to leave the Gillette stadium parking lot after they had been drinking there for five hours during the New England Country Music Festival on July 26, 2008. Their vehicle later crashed into a tree approximately a mile from the stadium.

Norfolk County Superior Court Judge Patrick Brady ruled that companies responsible for parking and security at Gillette stadium have a duty of reasonable care to patrons on their property, even if the patrons are acting in a risky and illegal manner. Judge Brady said it was foreseeable that teenagers not intending to enter the concert would drink excessively on the premises. He added that security did not properly look for underage drinking or ensure that customers in the parking lot had tickets.

Judge Brady’s decision will permit a jury to determine whether the Kraft companies are liable for the women’s deaths and injuries.

Houlihan and Davis’ family are suing the Kraft group and several affiliated entities, with Houlihan seeking $250,000 in damages and the Davis family asking for at least $2.5 million, said their lawyer, Joseph C. Borsellino.

Borsellino argued that the companies failed to properly supervise the parking lot where underage drinking was happening. “The venues for sports and entertainment have always thought they were insulated from liability,” he said. “This decision says, no, if you’re in the business of profit making and you’re selling space on your property, you have an obligation to make that property safe.”

An attorney for the defendants argued that the Kraft Group and affiliated companies should not be responsible for the accident because the women were engaged in criminal activity and trespassing since they lacked tickets for the event. Signs posted at the stadium indicate that only ticket holders may be in the parking lot, said the defendants’ attorneys.

The defendant companies FXP LLC, TeamOps LLC, and NPS LLC had filed motions for summary judgment that would have dismissed the case, but Judge Brady denied the motions.

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November 26, 2012

Holiday Travel Car Safety

As Thanksgiving weekend comes to an end, so does one of the busiest travel weekends of the year, and New England roadways return to business as usual. An estimated 1.7 million people took to the roads in New England the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the days following the holiday proved to be as busy.

The busiest travel days in the Bay State occurred Wednesday and Sunday as major backups and minor accidents occurred. Traffic was heavy on Interstate 93 and the Mass Turnpike on Wednesday; on Thursday, holiday travelers were jammed in a thirteen mile backup on I-90. On Sunday, the intersecting point of Interstate 84 and Interstate 90 proved to be the source of the most traffic during the day.

Two minor car accidents occurred on the Mass Pike this Sunday as well as many similar accidents throughout the weekend. The accidents caused prolonged backups for a major part of the day. No major accidents were reported. Authorities in Connecticut reported that two people had died on the state’s roadways.

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November 24, 2012

Women Surpass Men in Holding Licenses, Impacting Car Accident and Safety Statistics

For the first time in American history, women drivers now exceed the amount of licensed drivers in the United States over men. The news came after a study by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute, which viewed gender trends in drivers licenses between 1995 and 2010, released its results. This reverses a long time gap between male and female drivers, dating all the way back to Henry Ford’s first Model T.

During the early twentieth century, women drivers were a minority and were ridiculed by men for driving. The trend continued in the Eisenhower era when only half of women eligible for drivers licenses held them; they were mostly expected to play the role of “homemakers” and raise families. As women started to enter the workforce and the idea of “women’s liberation” began to gain popularity, women started to drive more. By 1995, the number of women who obtained driver’s licenses were only slightly behind men, and in 2010, the trend finally reversed itself.

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November 9, 2012

Fall Nor'easter Endangers Roadways

Drivers in the Bay State, still recovered from last week’s hurricane, endured a strong Nor’easter that wreaked havoc on the roads, resulting in flooded and icy conditions. The storm left a total of nine inches of snow in Massachusetts, although many places received a mixture of rain and snow. It also produced strong wind gusts up to 75 miles per hour on the Cape and Islands and up to 50 miles per hour in Boston. The extreme weather amounted to a perfect storm of dangerous road conditions. 

State police reported a number of spinouts and accidents on major roadways, which were compounded by heavy traffic delays. An accident that occurred Wednesday on Route 28 in Bourne resulted in the fatality of a Rhode Island man after his car hydroplaned and struck a utility pole. Bourne and State police responded to the crash, and it remains under investigation. 

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September 8, 2012

Eastbound driver on Westbound lane causes car collision and pile-up

As of late Friday night, reports were appearing on the internet about a head-on collision on the westbound lane of Interstate 90. The crash happened at around 8:30 pm on September 7, 2012, near exit 6 of the turnpike, close to mile marker 54. As authorities responded to the incident, traffic was diverted off the highway at exit 7, near Ludlow, Massachusetts, according to Trooper Kenneth Gaetz.

It had been assumed early on that the cause of the accident was a driver heading east on the westbound lane. Two other cars slammed into the first accident causing a pile up that snarled the weekend traffic. At least two people were taken by ambulance to Bay State Medical Center in Springfield, Massachusetts and the highway was shut down for roughly three hours. Area police and fire departments, state police crime scene and accident reconstruction units, and the State Department of Highways were all present on the scene. Authorities had gathered, but not yet confirmed, that a 2001 Honda from Connecticut was driving the wrong way down the westbound lane on the turnpike and crashed into a 1993 Subaru registered to an address in West Brookfield.

Tragically, new reports arose this morning saying that both men in the original pile up succumbed to their injuries and were pronounced at the hospital. David Procopio, spokesman for the State Police, asserted that there were other injured but he would not specify. The names of the deceased have been withheld. All that is presently known is that the man who was driving the wrong way down the westbound lane was 84 years old. The driver of the 1993 Subaru was 29. The investigation is now being overseen by Troop E of the Massachusetts State police along with the aforementioned organizations.

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August 27, 2012

Cyclist hit by unknown motorist

Massachusetts bears the distinction of being ranked the United States’ third most “Bicycle Friendly State” for 2012. The Bay State placed 9th in 2011, 16th in 2010, and 19th in 2009. The secretary of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, Secretary Richard A. Davey, said that the state’s rising rank over the years accurately reflects the department’s commitment to providing safe and healthy transportation. Massachusetts’ climbing status as a hub for cyclists also substantiates the efforts behind the three-prong policy of the environmental initiative, GreenDOT: 1) Reduce Greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) 2) Promote the healthy transportation options of walking, bicycling, and public transit, and 3) Support smart growth development.

Sadly, with all the new bike paths and community efforts to promote cycling, like Boston’s Bike Week, mishaps occasionally still lead to tragedy.

Wellesley police report that on Friday, August 24, 2012, at around 1:58pm, 41 year old cyclist Alexander Motsenigos, husband of nearly ten years and father to a six year old boy, was struck and killed near the intersection of Weston Road and Linden Street, otherwise known as Wellesley Square. Motsenigos was wearing a helmet. And neighbors have said that the point of the collision, an intersection resting at the bottom of a short but steep hill, was a dangerous place.

Lieutenant Maria Cleary confirms that both Motsenigos and the vehicle were headed north. An
investigation is underway because the vehicle sped off, possibly unaware that someone had been struck. The public is being asked to provide any information. But because there were conflicting accounts of the automobile’s make and model, the police are unable to submit a definitive description.

I drive a lot. But I’m currently looking for a good bike in the interest of diversifying my workouts and getting a little more “green.” And I’m well aware of the friction that exists between

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July 25, 2012

Traffic Fatalities Increase Significantly in First Quarter of 2012

A recent report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that included an early estimate of motor vehicle traffic fatalities for the first quarter of 2012 has indicated a sharp increase in this figure compared with last year’s statistics. The projection estimates that 7,630 people died in motor vehicle accidents between January and March of this year. It comes amid reports from automakers that they are intensifying efforts to build cars that are safer and better-able to reduce the threats of distracted driving.

The NHTSA reports that the rise in fatalities translates to a roughly 13.5% increase from the number reported for the first quarter of 2011, which was 6,720. The NHTSA declined to include in the report any mention of contributing factors or implications of the data. However, a spokesman for the agency said, “It’s too soon to speculate…on any increase in deaths on our roadways.”

Perhaps the most puzzling part of this increase is that previous years all demonstrated a downward trend in roadway fatalities. In addition, many transportation safety officials commented that the figure is generally lowest for the first quarter of any given year, which is in large part due to the winter weather that usually accompanies those months. According to officials, the fact that this year’s winter was much warmer than usual, which meant that there were more drivers on the road than in other past years, could be a factor in the increase in fatalities.

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June 18, 2012

Wareham Man Killed in Head-On Collision

Christopher Elicier, a resident of Wareham, Mass., was killed Saturday night after his vehicle was struck head-on by another vehicle traveling in the wrong direction. Elicier was traveling on Interstate 495 in Wareham late Saturday night when another motorist, Phendy Pamphile, 26, of Brockton, driving in the opposite direction collided with him at about 10:20 p.m. According to State Police, Elicier was ejected from his vehicle, a 2012 Hyundai Veloster coupe, and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Pamphile sustained a serious leg injury and was trapped in his vehicle immediately following the crash. The Jaws of Life were used to remove him and he was transported to Tobey Hospital in Wareham, but he was later moved to Rhode Island Hospital. According to the hospital, Pamphile was listed in critical condition as of Sunday afternoon. Neither of the drivers was wearing a seatbelt.

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March 18, 2012

Boston is 3rd on Safe Driver List, Survey Reports

I know—we couldn’t believe it either. Haven’t most of us been nearly hit by a crazy driver zooming ahead on the narrow, winding Boston streets? Or witnessed such a driver? Or been that driver himself? In a shocking a recent survey from Men’s Health magazine, Boston was ranked third out of 100 cities in the U.S. with the least dangerous drivers. If this is the case, pondering the drivers in other cities is a scary thought.

The least “crash-prone” city was St. Paul, Minnesota, and second-place was awarded to Lincoln, Nebraska. Providence, Rhode Island, was ranked 95 on the list.

Men’s Health apparently came to their conclusions via a combined calculation of the following statistics: rate of fatal crashes, percentage of deaths involving alcohol, speeding or hit-and-run, rate of seat belt use, cell phone laws while driving, and number of years between accidents.

Some speculation is that Boston drivers are simply accustomed to tough driving conditions—including those notorious Boston jaywalkers.

Boston ranks high on safe-drivers list, March 15, 2012, Boston.com.

February 17, 2012

Brighton Woman Struck by Company Tow Truck & Dies

A woman from Brighton was struck by a tow truck as she was crossing the street on Thursday evening. The woman was rushed to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center for treatment, but was pronounced dead today. The name of the trucking company has not been given, but the company is believed to be based in Brighton or Allston. According to reports, the woman was hit crossing market street, near the intersection of Chestnut Hill Avenue and Washington Street.

According to a passenger in the tow truck at the time of the accident, the tow truck allegedly had the green light to turn from Chestnut Hill Avenue to Washington Street but had already begun to turn when it saw the woman and was unable to stop. Further details, including whether or not the trucking driver/company will face charges, have not been released. The case is being investigated by the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office.

Our sympathies are with the family of the deceased. If you or a loved one has been injured as a driver or pedestrian in a car or truck crash in Massachusetts, you should contact an experienced car accident attorney to determine whether you may be able to financially recover.

Woman Hit By Tow Truck Dies, TheBostonChannel.com, February 17, 2012

Brighton woman, 52, dies after being struck by Allston-based tow truck in Brighton Center, Boston.com, February 17, 2012

February 16, 2012

High Speed Danvers Car Crash Results in Death of a Peabody Man

According to State Police, a 30-year-old Peabody man was killed in a car crash on Route 128 in Danvers due to high speed. Police report that Reginaldo Dasilva Souza was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash and his passenger was seriously injured. At approximately 8 p.m. on February 5, troopers from the Danvers State Police Barracks responded to reports of a single-car crash on Route 128 southbound at Route 35. The preliminary investigation revealed that Souza`s 1991 Honda Accord was traveling at a high speed when it crashed into a guardrail before veering across two lanes, hit a jersey barrier, and then continued onto a ramp to Route 35 and then crashed into two other jersey barriers. Police reported that the impact of the crash not only knocked over the jersey barriers but resulted in the car to roll over onto its roof where it finally came to rest. Although Souza was wearing his seatbelt, his passenger, Sidney Gomes Dasilva, 37, was not wearing his safety belt and was taken with serious life-threatening injuries by medical helicopter to Massachusetts General Hospital.

Section 13A, Chapter 90, of the Commonwealth´s General Laws, states that all occupants of motor vehicles in a private vehicle, including vans and trucks, are required to be properly restrained by a seatbelt: “No person shall operate a private passenger motor vehicle or ride in a private passenger motor vehicle, a vanpool vehicle or truck under eighteen thousand pounds on any way unless such person is wearing a safety belt which is properly adjusted and fastened.”

The investigation continues and is being carried out by Troop A of the Massachusetts State Police, along with the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, and the State Police Crime Scene Services Section. State Troopers were assisted at the scene of the crash by the Danvers police, fire, and EMS departments.

In a statement, police said: "The facts and circumstances of the crash remain under investigation; preliminary evidence suggests that excessive speed was a factor, and troopers are additionally investigating whether alcohol was a factor."

Although the circumstances and exact cause of the accident are still under investigation, possible inebriation along high speed are potential factors. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that in 2006 alone, 17,941 people died because of alcohol-related collisions in the United States.

If you or your loved one has been involved in a road accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Sources:

Peabody man dies in Danvers car crash last night, www.boston.com, February 6, 2012

Commonwealth´s General Laws, Section 13A, Chapter 90

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January 10, 2012

Recent Accidents Spark Seatbelt Enforcement Debate in Massachusetts

Recent car crashes in December involving drivers or passengers not wearing seatbelts has resulted in a strong response from seatbelt advocates. Advocates are calling for stricter enforcement of the state’s seat belt law after these car crashes, many of which ended fatally. They are arguing that this is more than enough evidence that seatbelts save lives and they are calling on lawmakers to act in the New Year.

Massachusetts law already requires drivers and passengers to wear seat belts; however, police can only enforce the rule if they have stopped the vehicle for another violation, such as running a red light or speeding. Senator Patricia Jehlen, D-Somerville, and Representative Patricia Haddad, D-Somerset, are the chief sponsors of a bill that would make Massachusetts the 32nd state in the nation to let police pull over drivers for seat belt violations.

A recent UMass-Amherst study found that approximately 73 percent of Massachusetts drivers use seat belts, which is the lowest seatbelt usage rate in the United States and has thus sparked this debate. This number is also slightly lower than last year´s percentage of seatbelt users. All of the accident victims of the four accidents that occurred in December were young adults. Deborah Pentecost, a trauma program manager at South Shore Hospital in Weymouth, witnesses the flux of young victims entered into the emergency room who were not wearing seatbelts and believes that the message must also come from education. She commented “It’s the younger population that takes the risks…I think we’ve gotten the message to adults that have kids…and the population over 50.”

Mary Maguire, a spokeswoman for AAA Southern New England and co-chairwoman of Belts Ensure a Safer Tomorrow (BEST), a coalition of about 60 health, law enforcement and driver-safety groups, said “When there’s stronger, more effective enforcement, compliance increases.” BEST estimates that a stricter seat belt law could save Massachusetts approximately $1 billion over six years, because of avoided hospital bills, lower insurance premiums, and eligibility for federal grants.

The legislation to update the seatbelt law died in a tie vote in the House in 2004. In 2006, a similar bill passed both chambers in 2006, but was later shot down in a procedural vote in the House when three representatives changed their votes. Robert Fitzpatrick, Senator Jehlen’s chief of staff, said “We think we have the votes in the Senate…(In the House) it’s hard to know.”

Opponents to the bill, such as civil liberty groups, argue that the stricter seat belt law could give the opportunity to police to easily abuse the law by making unnecessary traffic stops or as an excuse for racial profiling.

If you have been involved in a road accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Sources:

Groups calling for tougher seat belt laws, Taunton Daily Gazette, January 5, 2012

Update sought on Massachusetts seat belt law, The Patriot Ledger, January 3, 2012

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January 1, 2012

Bicyclist Hit and Killed by Oil Tanker in Cambridge

Phyo Kyaw, a 2010 Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate, age 23, was killed on campus on Tuesday night after his bicycle was hit by an oil tanker. At approximately 7:40 p.m., he was riding his bicycle at the intersection of Vassar Street and Massachusetts Avenue when the oil tanker was turning from Massachusetts Avenue onto Vassar Street, towards Main Street. Kyaw was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Kyaw, from the Southeast Asian nation of Myanmar, graduated from MIT in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in chemical-biological engineering. According to the MIT News Office, Kyaw was a member of the Sigma Nu fraternity. After he graduated, he was working as a research scientist at Soane Labs in Cambridge.

Cambridge police said that there have been 27 recorded accidents at the Massachusetts Avenue and Vassar Street intersection since January 2010. MIT Chancellor Eric Grimson commented “This death, so tragic and so close to home, touches and concerns our entire community…Our thoughts go out to Phyo Kyaw’s family, friends, and classmates. We share their sense of loss and grief.”

The Middlesex District Attorney’s office is leading the investigation into the crash and is working with the Cambridge and MIT police departments. The truck driver was uninjured in the accident and he has not been charged.

According to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, from 2002 through 2009, approximately 400 car crashes, fatal and non-fatal, were involving cyclists. Statistics additionally reveal that more bike and car accidents happen in Cambridge more than in any other Massachusetts community. As a preventative measure to bike accidents with vehicles, MassDOT provides these helpful safety guidelines for bicyclists:

• Give yourself space from cars
• Ride in the same direction as traffic
• Always wear your helmet
• Stop at red lights and stop signs
• Put front and back lights on your bike at night

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that in 2009 alone, 630 cyclists were killed in the United States. In addition to this, 51,000 were injured in motor vehicle traffic accidents. Cyclist deaths thus made up 2% of all motor vehicle accident fatalities. Approximately 70% of all bicycle fatalities happen in urban centers or college campuses, such as the case here, where there are more cars and bikes on the road together. The NHTSA also reports that bicycle helmets are 85% to 88% effective at preventing head injuries and death. However, the statistics show that less than 25% of all bicyclists wear a helmet.

If you have been injured or involved in a Massachusetts car or bike accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts lawyer.

Sources:

Cyclist killed in Cambridge accident ID´d, The Boston Herald, December 29, 2011

MIT graduate is identified as victim in bicycle-truck collision, The Boston Globe, December 28, 2011

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November 30, 2011

Motorists Encouraged to Remain in Vehicles After an Accident Following Multiple Massachusetts Highway Fatalities

After a series of deaths in which drivers have stepped out of their vehicles on Massachusetts highways, Massachusetts State Police are reminding drivers to always remain in their vehicles after an accident until police arrive. After these three recent accidents, all of which appear to have initially been minor auto accidents, three people have died as a result of exiting their vehicles and stepping out into traffic. The first of these three incidents occurred on Friday morning, when a 75-year-old Somerville man was struck and killed in the Tip O'Neill Tunnel in Boston. Before hit by oncoming traffic, David Dang was reportedly standing in the traffic lane when he got out of his car after what seems to have been a minor car accident.

Just a few hours later, two other motorists were hit after getting out of their car in Lynnfield, just fifteen miles north of Boston. State Police report that a 2000 Saturn SL2 sedan had halted in the median on the southbound side of Route 128, at approximately 11:45 p.m. Two of the four occupants of the vehicle then exited the car and were standing in the travel lane when they were both hit by a vehicle. Police said Conner Toscano, 18, of Billerica was pronounced dead at the scene and 17-year-old Billerica woman was severely injured. She was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital with life-threatening injuries.

At approximately 1:15 a.m. on Saturday morning, Massachusetts State Police responded to yet another similar accident in Lancaster. On Route 190 northbound, just north of Exit 7, authorities reported that a 2005 Toyota Camry had hit the guardrail and was disabled in the median. The driver, Scott Symonds, 38, of West Boylston, then exited his vehicle and was hit by a 2006 Ford pickup truck driven by Eric Sifert, 42, of Westminster. Symonds was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.

David Procopio, spokesperson for the state police, said "The crash remains under investigation to determine if any charges are warranted…The investigation is being conducted by Troop C of the Massachusetts State Police, along with the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section and the State Police Crime Scene Services Section."

Each of these highway-related fatalities involving people getting out of vehicles remain under investigation by Massachusetts State Police. State police are reminding motorists in disabled cars to try to get their vehicles out of the road immediately following an accident and to stay in their cars until police arrive at the scene of a reported crash.

If you have been involved in a Massachusetts car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced a Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

2 Killed Standing On Highways, www.thebostonchannel.com, November 27, 2011

Massachusetts man killed on highway after exiting vehicle following minor crash, www.MassLive.com, November 26, 2011

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October 28, 2011

Man in Wheelchair Killed on Busy Street in Brockton

U.S. Marine Corps veteran Edwin Nelson, 65, was killed when his motorized wheelchair was hit by oncoming traffic earlier this week in Brockton. According to witnesses, Nelson was crossing in a crosswalk on Belmont Street, also known as Route 123, when a Hyundai Elantra driven by 26-year-old Frank Dernoga, of Taunton, crashed into his wheelchair. He was knocked off his wheelchair near the crosswalk and rolled into the street. He was taken to Good Samaritan Medical Center and was pronounced dead.

Nelson was living at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center which is located less than a mile away from the crash site. He was a Vietnam veteran with a spinal cord injury that led to the amputation of both of his legs. His son, Geoff Nelson, wrote that his father had been a part of research to help pioneer spinal-cord medicine over the past 36 years, along with many other spinal-cord injury patients at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Nelson’s fatal accident has drawn attention to safety issues for pedestrians on Belmont Street, especially for disabled veterans who frequent the notoriously busy street. A spokeswoman for the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Pallis Wahl, said that a treatment team including a doctor, nurse, and social worker, evaluates each patient on an individual basis to determine the necessary care and whether or not a patient needs to be escorted when outside of the facility. It was determined that Nelson was fit to be outside of the facility without supervision from an escort. Wahl said, “It’s a case-by-case basis.”

Some local residents believe that the disabled patients should always have an escort for their own safety given the circumstances of Belmont Street. One resident commented, “It is sad…I’ve seen the conditions of driving on Belmont Street. It’s atrocious.”

Police are reportedly reviewing surveillance video from a business close to the scene of the accident that captured the crash. There has not been any decision as of this week as to whether Dernoga will face charges.

If you have been injured in a Massachusetts car accident or involved in a pedestrian, wheelchair, or bike accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts lawyer.

Sources:

Disabled vet killed in Brockton accident helped pioneer spinal-cord medicine, Taunton Daily Gazette, October 26, 2011

Military veteran killed in Brockton road crash, www.Boston.com, October 24, 2011

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October 12, 2011

Man Held on $20,000 Bail for Causing Crash and Fatalities in Worcester

Two young men were killed early on Sunday morning in a Worcester car accident when another vehicle slammed into them. Robert J. Curran, 22, was allegedly driving between 80 to 100 mph at approximately 2 a.m. when he crashed his vehicle into a 2005 blue Acura driven by 18-year-old Andres Guzman. Both Guzman and his passenger, 19-year-old Joel Rodriguez, died at the scene of the accident. Jesus Molina, 19, another passenger in Guzman’s car, was seriously injured and remains in critical condition at UMass Memorial Medical Center — University Campus. The identity and condition of a male passenger in Curran's car was not released.

According to State Registry of Motor Vehicle records, Curran has had a number of driving offenses since 2005 and his license was suspended at the time of the accident.

Curran also allegedly left the scene of the accident after briefly speaking to a paramedic about chest pain. The paramedic reportedly briefly helped another accident victim, and turned back to Curran but he was gone. The paramedic was later able to identify Curran at a police station from an array of photos. According to court records, Curran first went to Harrington HealthCare at Hubbard in Webster where he told hospital staff that he was hurt in a bar fight. He was later transferred to UMass Memorial Medical Center—University Campus where he is currently being treated for his injuries.

During his arraignment this week at the hospital, Assistant District Attorney Brett F. Dillon detailed the allegations and asked that Curran be held on $100,000 cash bail. Dillon said, “Mr. Curran's operation of that vehicle was reckless to say the least…Witnesses have him going between 80 to 100 miles per hour and colliding with these young men.”

Andrea Levy, Defense lawyer for Curran, said her client has no convictions on his record and asked that her client be released on personal recognizance.

Judge Margaret Guzman ordered that Curran be held on $20,000 cash bail and continued his case to November 8. She charged him with two counts of motor vehicle homicide by negligent driving, two counts of leaving the scene of an accident after causing death, negligent driving, leaving the scene of an accident causing personal injury, speeding, leaving the scene after causing property damage and driving with a suspended license. Curran pleaded not guilty to all of the charges against him.

If you have been involved in a road accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Source:

Driver in double fatality is held on $20,000 bail, www.Telegram.com, October 11, 2011

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September 23, 2011

Lynn Man Dies After Windshield Hit by Wheel

An accident is under investigation in which a 27-year-old man from Lynn died on Monday after a heavy-duty tire/wheel assembly had loosened from a flatbed truck and crashed into his windshield on Interstate 93 in Somerville. State Police spokesman David Procopio said that the flatbed truck was going south on I-93 from when one of four tires came loose from a single strap on the bed of the truck. The tire assembly, weighing approximately 400 pounds, bounced over the median into northbound traffic and subsequently crashed into the windshield of Joseph LeBlanc´s 2003 Mitsubishi Galant. After being hit by the tire, the car continued northbound before it crashed into the median wall and became jammed in between two sections of the retaining wall. Rescue crews used the “jaws of life” to remove the driver. He was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The vehicle was registered to Ryder Truck in Braintree and was being leased by Sullivan Tire, according to State Police. The tire/wheel assembly was one of four being hauled by Sullivan Tire and was reportedly taking the tire assemblies to a customer. The tires had a tire fill material in them, making them even heavier in an attempt to weigh them down.

The truck driver, Gregory Ross, 62, of Merrimack, N.H., reportedly noticed a strap flapping around and came to a stop as soon as he could. He said: “We had tires strapped on the back of the truck…The pallet they were sitting on broke. So naturally the strap loosened up and they started falling off…I noticed in the review mirrors, naturally, that the strap was flapping and another tire was about to come off.”

Procopio said that no charges have been filed but police are continuing their investigation in order to determine if anyone involved in the crash should receive charges.

If you have been injured in a Massachusetts car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

Man Killed After Loose Tire Smashes Car, TheBostonChannel.com, September 19, 2011

Lynn man, 27, dies after tire from truck strikes car on I-93, Boston Globe, September 20, 2011

Merrimack man drove truck involved in fatal I-93 crash in Mass., police say , Nashua Telegraph, September 21, 2011

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September 16, 2011

Woman Charged for Fatal Crash in Stoughton Held on $100,000 Bail

A Bridgewater woman has been charged with drunken driving in a crash last weekend that killed an Easton woman. Patricia Neville-Colp, 48, was arraigned on September 12 in the Stoughton District Court for motor vehicle homicide while under the influence of alcohol and drugs, for leaving the scene of an accident, and for 7 other related charges. Her cash bail was set at $100,000, which was ten times higher than the bail sought by prosecutors. Such a high bail is an example of lawmakers´ recent attempts to crackdown on repeat dangerous drivers.

Neville-Colp’s state driving record revealed seven surchargeable accidents. Under Massachusetts law, a driver may incur a surcharge for any of the following reasons:

• pays the fine assessed
• is found guilty or responsible by the court
• is assigned by the court to a driver alcohol education program or a controlled substance abuse treatment or rehabilitation program
• defaults on the citation by failing to pay the assessed fine or attending the hearing

Three of these surcharges occurred within the past five years and Neville-Colp received four speeding fines since 1982.

Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester), who is responsible for last month´s bill to toughen penalties for repeat dangerous drivers, said “We have to have some system in place that recognizes the cumulative nature of these offenses — and today we don’t…With each passing day, we see more tragedy on the roadway of the commonwealth, and we need to address it.”

State police report that Neville-Colp’s Jeep Grand Cherokee smashed into the side of a Kia Sportage just after 11 p.m. Saturday on Route 24. Kia passenger Maureen O’Brien Ellis, 57, of Easton was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the Kia, Steven H. Cadoff, 64, and passenger Martha A. Cadoff, 63, were hospitalized with injuries.

State police reported that Neville-Colp was obviously intoxicated when they pulled her over on Route 25. Trooper Brian Berry reported: “Her eyes were bloodshot and glassy…Her speech was slurred and thick-tongued.” Neville-Colp first told police she was coming from work but then later admitted she had been drinking at a local bar. State troopers also reportedly found 17 marijuana cigarettes and a bottle of pills in her car.

If you have been involved in a road accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Sources:

High bail set for Mass. woman in fatal car crash, Boston Globe, September 12, 2011

Crackdown urged after deadly crash, The Boston Herald, September 12, 2011

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September 9, 2011

Wheel Separates from Vehicle and Causes Fatal Accident in Warren

Authorities are investigating a fatal car crash in Warren on the Massachusetts Turnpike that killed a woman from Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on September 2. Police report that 62-year-old Kathleen Meats died after her left rear wheel had dislodged from her vehicle which caused her to lose control of her car. Her vehicle hit a guardrail, spun out of control, and crashed into an embankment.

Kathleen Meats was taken to the Palmer Wing Memorial Hospital and pronounced dead. Meats´ 24-year-old daughter, Kathleena Meats, was a passenger in the vehicle and was wearing her seatbelt. She was also taken to the Palmer Wing Memorial Hospital and is reported to have suffered minor injuries from the accident.

The accident remains under investigation with the assistance of the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section and the State Police Crime Scene Services Section. State Troopers were assisted at the scene of the accident by the Warren and Brimfield Fire Departments and the Department of Transportation Highway Division.

Although the details of this accident are still under investigation, this accident could potentially be a defective products case as the tire was possibly defective or not properly attached to the vehicle. Investigators would need to know whether or not Meats´ vehicle had any recent tire maintenance.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that seatbelts save over 13,000 lives per year. The NHTSA provides the following tips on the importance of seatbelt safety:

• Wearing a seatbelt is the best way to protect yourself in an accident
• Airbags do not replace seatbelts
• To buckle-up correctly, the lap belt and shoulder belt should be secure across the pelvis and rib cage
• Everyone should wear a seatbelt despite age or condition. Pregnant women, obese, and elderly, can all effectively buckle-up safely.

If you have been injured in a Massachusetts car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

NH woman dies in Mass. car crash, Boston Herald, September 3, 2011

Massachusetts turnpike crash in Warren claims life of Kathleen Meats, 62, of Portsmouth, NH, MassLive.com, September 2, 2011

Woman killed when tire comes off on Mass. Pike, Worcester Telegram, September 3, 2011

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September 2, 2011

Driver Accused of Trying to Cover-Up Involvement in Fatal Hit-and-Run in Revere

At approximately 5:30 a.m. on Sunday near 335 Lee Burbank Highway in Revere, Sothany Pen, 22, was hit and killed by a vehicle that fled the scene of the accident. Jon J. Ravida, 47, who struck Pen, reportedly returned to his mother´s house after the accident, hid his damaged Ford Explorer, and then drove past the scene of the accident in his mother´s vehicle. He is also accused of bleaching the stain on his vehicle and trying to hammer out the dents in his vehicle. Megan O’Rourke, Suffolk County assistant district attorney, said during Ravida’s arraignment in Chelsea District Court that he went to great lengths to try to cover up his involvement in the accident.

A Revere police account reported that a witness saw Ravida purchasing cigarettes at a Hess gas station. Ravida and the witness ended up in the same flow of traffic on the northbound side of the freeway and the witness noticed Ravida cross from the left lane and then back to the right lane before swerving back to the left lane. The witness noticed an object fall off of Ravida´s roof which he believed at the time to be a piece of luggage. He then saw Pen lying in the street and pulled over to help her and called 911. At this point, Ravida reversed his vehicle and turned around to go south on the road despite the witness´s attempt to flag him down. Pen had severe head injuries, was not breathing, and had no pulse by the time police arrived.

Another witness, John Merullo, said that he was sitting in the employee parking lot of Capitol Waste Services, a trash hauling company in East Boston, and saw the suspect pull up next to him at 5:35 a.m., immediately following the accident. Merullo commented “I could see fear on his face…Then he very calmly backed out, like he didn’t want to arise suspicion. But the front of his Explorer had a lot of damage to the front, and it was obvious to me that something serious had just happened.’’ Merullo then drove a short distance before finding the scene of the accident and told police what he had just observed and that the employee parking lot has surveillance cameras. Police also retrieved video surveillance footage from the gas station.
Police arrested Ravida on Monday based on the surveillance evidence and witness accounts. Inhis arraignment, O´Rourke reported that Ravida told police that he hit something but didn´t know what it was on his way to work at Logan International Airport.

Ravida´s license has been suspended four times and he was charged with being at fault in two previous accidents. The defendant pleaded not guilty to charges of motor vehicle homicide and leaving the scene of an accident causing personal injury or death. He is scheduled to return to court for a probable cause hearing on September 23. Judge James Wexler set Ravida’s bail at $25,000, citing the defendant’s alleged attempt to cover up his involvement in the fatal accident.

If you have been injured in a Massachusetts car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Source:

, Boston.com, August 31, 2011

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August 18, 2011

Summer Traffic Woes Continue, Cross-country Drive Turns Fatal

A mother from Massachusetts was driving her six children from Massachusetts to the West Coast for a family gathering when she lost control of her vehicleearly in the morning on August 2nd in Beaver Creek, Minnesota. Pamela Roper, a 43-year-old mother from Massachusetts, admitted to falling asleep at the wheel around 4 a.m. near Exit 5 on Interstate 90. Minnesota State Patrol established that the vehicle went off of the road, through a ditch, and hit an embankment.

Her 14-year-old teenage son, Daniel Davis, was pronounced deceased at the scene of the accident. He was not wearing his seatbelt. Roper and three of her other children were taken to the hospital with serious injuries. Their ages are 11, 9, and 7. Two of her other children were treated at the scene of the accident, aged 19 and 4.

Minnesota State Patrol commented that the accident was "a sad reminder of the dangers on the road". Minnesota State Patrol Captain Brian West confirmed that in addition to Roper feeling fatigued, not everyone, including the teenager, was wearing their seatbelt. He commented that wearing a seatbelt on the interstate is especially important: "If you are, you're going to survive that crash…If you're not, especially at highway speeds like 70 miles per hour, your chances of death or serious injury are significantly increased." Despite the fact that this portion of the interstate does not have frequent traffic, many accidents occur in this rural area. "A majority of the crashes that occur in Minnesota that result in fatalities occur in rural Minnesota…So, even though we may not always have a lot of traffic, some people may think there's no need for the belt because it appears to be safer roadways," said West.

Roper has been released from the hospital but her three children remain in critical condition.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that seatbelts save over 13,000 lives per year. The NHTSA provides the following tips on the importance of seatbelt safety:

• Wearing your seatbelt is the best way to protect yourself in an accident
• Airbags do not replace seatbelts
• To buckle-up correctly, the lap belt and shoulder belt should be secure across the pelvis and rib cage
• In order for a seatbelt to work correctly, it must fit correctly; belt extenders or new shoulder belts are available from car dealers and manufacturers.
• Everyone should wear a seatbelt despite age or condition. Pregnant women, obese, and eldery, can all effectively buckle-up safely.

The NHTSA also advises frequent or potentially fatigued drivers with the following:

• Do not start your journey tired.
• Do not continue to drive if you become tired. Pull over to a safe stop as soon as possible.
• For long drives, plan at least 15-minute breaks every two hours.
• Opening the window for fresh air or turning up the radio are only sufficient until you find a place to pull over.

If you have been involved in a car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced car accident lawyer.

Source:

Fatigue, Seatbelts Factor In Fatal I-90 Crash , Keloland.com, August 2, 2011

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Continue reading "Summer Traffic Woes Continue, Cross-country Drive Turns Fatal" »

July 29, 2011

Blaze in Saugus Caused by Crashed Gas Tanker

The driver of a gasoline tanker truck has died after his tanker crashed into a median in Saugus on Route 1 and exploded. Neal Michaud, 59, from Manchester, N.H., lost control of the vehicle at approximately 2:15 a.m. on Sunday morning. David Procopio, a State Police spokesman, reported that the truck hit the median before rolling over the barrier and into the opposite lane of traffic. Six cars collided into the gasoline truck and an explosion ignited from the leaking oil. It is approximated that the truck was holding up to 11,000 gallons of fuel.

Michaud could not escape from the cab of the truck and he died at the scene of the accident. He was driving the truck for PJ Murphy Transportation of Methuen. The truck was burned to its frame. Several vehicles were also severely damaged and many had their tires burned completely off of their wheels. Three motorists sustained minor injuries and were treated at local hospitals. Procopio confirmed that one motorist, Kevin Fitzgerald, 60, a resident of South Hamilton, sustained severe burns and had emergency surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Approximately 45 minutes after the truck crashed, a second explosion ignited in a nearby creek due to the spilt gasoline leaking into storm-drains. Fire Chief James L. Blanchard said that this fire sent burning embers into a neighborhood, catching fire to a house, two greenhouse buildings, fences, and numerous areas of brush. Blanchard said, “Lights were shaking from the ceilings of homes, and people woke up to see flames in the back of their house.’’

Saugus resident Michael Shaw, 41, woke up to the sounds of explosions: “They sounded like transformers popping off. That’s what I thought it was first, but then three more came…I looked out the window again and I saw a ball of flame rising.’’ His wife, Nicole, 36, said, “There were explosions going down and the embers were flying on top of our house…I grabbed my kids and the dogs and put them in the car.’’

The residential neighborhood was evacuated and 120 residents had to find shelter in the early morning until they were allowed to return home later that day. The Saugus Fire Department reported an eight-alarm response and fire crews from Boston, Revere, Chelsea, Woburn, Somerville, Belmont, Cambridge, Lynn, Lynnfield, Burlington, Danvers, Stoneham, Malden, Winchester, Medford, Wakefield, Everett, and Winthrop responded. Special units from Massport Fire Rescue helped to contain the gasoline fire with chemical foam equipment that is used for putting out airplane fires. Fire Chief Blanchard said, “We had to get foam in there, and we needed lots of it…Without foam, there’s no hope of controlling the fire.’’

Officials confirmed that most of the gas had burned off in the fires and that drinking water was not affected. Edmund Coletta, a spokesman for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection said “It appears that the gasoline was consumed by the fire…Even though it was released into the environment, it appears to have been consumed at this point.’’

State Representative Donald Wong, who toured the scene of the accident and subsequent fire, said, “We’re fortunate that it happened when it happened…If it happened on a weekday when Route 1 is filled with traffic it would have been much worse.’’

State Police are investigating the accident and the cause of the crash. Procopio said the company has a sound safety record and that “Our commercial vehicle team has had interactions with the company in a positive manner. They have a very good safety record.’’

If you have been involved in a Massachusetts car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Source:

Gas tanker crash creates Route 1 inferno, The Boston Globe, July 24, 2011

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Continue reading "Blaze in Saugus Caused by Crashed Gas Tanker" »

July 12, 2011

Jamaica Plain Man Dead After Two-Vehicle Crash in Quincy

A Jamaica Plain man has died after a two-car crash early on Sunday morning in Quincy. A preliminary investigation by State Police reveals that the 50-year old Jamaica Plain man was driving a 1995 Ford Explorer on Quincy Shore Drive northbound when another vehicle driven by a man from Plymouth, 28-year-old Anthony Deicicchi, was driving southbound and crossed over the center divider line into the opposite lane of traffic. Deicicchi hit the Explorer head-on. The 50-year-old driver and his passenger, a 22-year-old Dorchester man, were both taken to Boston Medical Center with life-threatening injuries. The 50-year-old driver was pronounced dead at the hospital. Deicicchi´s passenger, a 27-year-old man from Hull, was taken to Boston Medical Center, also with serious injuries.

Deicicchi will be arraigned for the death of the driver in Quincy District Court. State Troopers found that Deicicchi was under the influence at the scene of the accident and arrested him. He has been charged with motor vehicle homicide while operating under the influence, two counts of operating under the influence of alcohol causing serious bodily injury for the two surviving victims, operating under the influence of alcohol, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, and for violating marked lanes.

The accident is under investigation by Troop H of the Massachusetts State Police, the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, and the State Police Crime Scene Services Section.

Massachusetts General Law, Part I, Title XIV, Chapter 90, Section 24, (1) (a) (1), states that “Whoever, upon any way or in any place to which the public has a right of access, or upon any way or in any place to which members of the public have access as invitees or licensees, operates a motor vehicle with a percentage, by weight, of alcohol in their blood of eight one-hundredths or greater, or while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, or of marijuana, narcotic drugs, depressants or stimulant substances…shall be punished by a fine of not less than five hundred nor more than five thousand dollars or by imprisonment for not more than two and one-half years, or both such fine and imprisonment.”

Although the circumstances and the cause of the accident are still under investigation, it is very likely that this accident was due to Deicicchi´s inebriation. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that in 2006 alone, 17,941 people died because of alcohol-related collisions in the United States.

As summertime approaches its midpoint, we unfortunately see more of these tragic accidents. Failing to use common sense while drinking and driving can have catastrophic consequences on your life and the lives of others. You have heard this a thousand times before but it can’t be said enough - if you choose to drink, drink responsibly. Whether it requires to take a cab, leave your car, call a friend, our just stay where you are until you are able to safely drive, please do it.

If you have been a victim of a road accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Source:

Plymouth man charged in fatal crash, Wicked Local Plymouth / Enterprise News, July 11, 2011

Massachusetts General Laws, Part I, Title XIV, Chapter 90, Section 24

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Continue reading "Jamaica Plain Man Dead After Two-Vehicle Crash in Quincy" »

July 6, 2011

Man Indicted for Fatal Crash in Somerville

The driver of a fatal accident over two months ago in Somerville has been indicted and will be arraigned in Middlesex Superior Court on July 6. Kenneth Belew, 21, from Somerville, has been indicted on two counts of motor vehicle homicide. He was allegedly driving under the influence and crashed his vehicle. The crash resulted in the death of two of his five passengers.

Belew has been indicted by a Middlesex County Grand Jury on charges of negligent operation of a motor vehicle and two counts of motor vehicle homicide by operating under the influence of liquor.

On April 21, Belew allegedly left a local bar after alcohol consumption and met up with a group of people at a house in Somerville where he reportedly continued to drink. At 3:15 am, Belew and a group of five people left the house to drive to local restaurant. Belew was asked to slow down by his passengers after speeding and running a red light. At this point, three of the passengers in the vehicle put on their seatbelts. The two deceased teenagers were sitting on the laps of two other passengers in the backseat and remained unrestrained. According to investigators of the accident, Belew was driving excessively fast before losing control of his vehicle. His passangers were thrown forward upon impact and were ejected from the vehicle. All of the victims were transported to Massachusetts General Hospital where their injuries were treated. This is a tragic situation and is a needless end to two lives of his passengers.

Although the charges against Belew are allegations and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty, his blood alcohol was measured at the scene of the accident as 0.17 which is more than twice the legal limit of blood alcohol content.

While we have limited facts as to how much alcohol he consumed at each location, one of the questions that needs to be addressed is whether or not he may have been over served at the bar he went to. Also, when he went to the house, who served him the alcohol- -an issue to be investigated is whether there is a social host liability issue? No matter who did the serving, this is a horrible tragedy that could have been avoided.

Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone said “This defendant is alleged to have driven under the influence of alcohol with a blood alcohol level over twice the legal limit, while recklessly driving erratically and at a high rate of speed along a public highway…This defendant’s alleged actions resulted in killing two young girls and injuring three passengers. Impaired driving is a serious public safety concern that can have life changing consequences, as is alleged to be the case here.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 17,941 people died because of alcohol-related collisions in the United States in 2006 alone.

If you have been involved in a road accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Source:

Somerville man indicted on motor vehicle homicide charges, The Somerville News, July 1, 2011

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Continue reading "Man Indicted for Fatal Crash in Somerville" »

May 31, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend Driving Results in Two Fatalities in Separate Accidents

Over Memorial Day Weekend, two separate fatal car accidents occurred early yesterday morning in Massachusetts. According to Massachusetts State Police, the first accident happened at approximately 1:45 a.m. on Sunday morning in Burlington on Interstate-95. The driver was a 46-year-old male from Burlington whose identity has not been released. He was driving a 2000 Land Rover Discovery and was pronounced deceased at the scene of the accident. Authorities believe that speed was the cause of the accident. The victim was not wearing his seatbelt.#

The second accident under investigation involved a pedestrian on Interstate-195 in Swansea and occurred at 3:12 a.m. Chrisie J. Wallace, aged 40, from Fall River, was hit by a 1998 Cadillac Deville in the eastbound lane. She was declared dead at the scene. The driver was Julian Juan, aged 48, from New Bedford. No charges have been filed against him but State Police are investigating the reason as to why Wallace was walking on the freeway.

As with any holiday or long weekend, it is especially important to use caution and judgment when travelling, always were your seatbelt, do not drive under the influence, and to be wary of possibly intoxicated drivers. The Massachusetts Department of Transportation warned drivers of congested roads and freeways over the weekend and reminded motorists that traffic would be particularly heavy during the daytime and early evenings.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) especially warned motorists to wear their seatbelts over the weekend after releasing their 2011 Click It or Ticket campaign on Thursday, May 26th. In a statement about the campaign, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, "We are reminding Americans to buckle up before they hit the road for the long Memorial Day weekend…Seat belts are a lifesaver, but too many people are failing to buckle their seat belts at night, and it’s costing lives."

NHTSA Administrator David Strickland warned that holidays, such as the Memorial Day weekend, are particularly dangerous and motorists should thus always wear their seatbelts. During the 2009 Memorial Day weekend, 55% of the 306 people who died in car accidents in the United States were not wearing seatbelts. Strickland commented: "Statistics tell a powerful story about the fate of unbelted motorists in crashes. That’s why law enforcement is exceptionally vigilant at this time of year."

If you have been involved in a fatal accident or a pedestrian car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Sources:

Two fatalities in separate car crashes early this morning, The Boston Globe, May 29, 2011

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood Announces 'Click It or Ticket' Campaign, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, May 26, 2011

Continue reading "Memorial Day Weekend Driving Results in Two Fatalities in Separate Accidents" »

May 16, 2011

Drunk Driver Causes Fatal Accident on Interstate 95

A woman has been charged with drunk driving after causing a fatal accident in Burlington on Saturday night. Nicole Parziale, 39, from Amesbury, was driving on Interstate 95 around 10:30 p.m. when she quickly turned left and crossed the middle lane into oncoming traffic. State Police report that Parziale´s Pontiac Grand Am hit the rear side Kayla E. Trenholm´s 1998 Buick sedan. The Buick came to rest in the third lane of traffic and the Grand Am came to rest on the left lane´s guard rail.

Trenholm, 20, from Hope Valley, R.I., and her passenger, David N. Torrey, 19, of Shannock, R.I., were taken to Winchester Hospital for potential minor injuries.

Parziale and her two passengers, Glenn Robichaud, 55, from Bedford, and Denis J. Splaine, 53, from Boston, were taken to the Lahey Clinic in Burlington. Splaine was released from the hospital after his injuries were treated and Parziale was listed as being in stable condition yesterday. Police report that Robichaud died from his injuries sustained in the accident.

A State Police spokesman, David Procopio, said that Parziale will likely also be charged with motor vehicle homicide. The charges against her currently include operating a vehicle under the influence of liquor, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, and operation of a motor vehicle with a suspended driver’s license. This is Parziale´s second offense for driving under the influence of alcohol.

The accident is still under investigation and being conducted by Troop A of the state police, the State Police Collision Analysis Reconstruction Section, the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, the Middlesex County State Police Detective Unit, the Lexington Police and Fire departments, and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation's highway division.

If you have been involved in a car accident in Massachusetts, it is in your best interest to contact a Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Source:

1 killed, 4 hurt in I-95 crash, The Boston Globe, May 16, 2011

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Continue reading "Drunk Driver Causes Fatal Accident on Interstate 95 " »

May 4, 2011

2-year-old in Car Seat Survives Fatal Crash in Raynham

A fatal accident in Raynham over the weekend is under investigation. The head-on collision on Saturday killed a mother from Taunton. Her only passenger was her 2-year-old daughter, who survived. Kerrin Durrigan was driving a white sedan on South Main Street when it collided into a black pick-up truck driven by Richard Lawrence, 25. His passenger was Justin Hauk, 27. Both from Raynham, they were taken to Morton Hospital and Medical Center. They were treated and have since been released.

Durrigan was trapped inside her vehicle and had to be extricated from the severely damaged car. Firefighters then performed CPR on Durrigan and she was taken to Morton Hospital and Medical Center. Fire Chief James Januse said that she was pronounced dead soon after.

Her daughter, Teagan Wilson, was taken to a Boston hospital to be monitored. Fire Chief Januse said “The child was in a car seat. That probably saved her life.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that approximately 8,959 young lives were saved from 1975 to 2008 because of child seats and restraints. Massachusetts law requires the use of child car seats until children are 8 years of age and are at least 57 inches tall.

The NHTSA recommends to:

• Find a car seat that fits your child's age, height, and weight.
• Keep your child in the car seat for as long as they fit the seat's height and weight requirements found in the manual.
• Children under 13 should always sit in the back seat.

When involved in a Massachusetts car accident, it is advised that you contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

Raynham Fire Chief: Being in car seat 'probably saved' child’s life in car crash, Taunton Daily Gazette, May 2, 2011

Child Passenger Safety Laws, Governors Highway Safety Administration, May 2011

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Massachusetts Car Crash Injures Mother and Baby

Continue reading "2-year-old in Car Seat Survives Fatal Crash in Raynham" »

April 30, 2011

Series of Early Morning Commute Accidents in Massachusetts Leave One Dead and Several Injured

A number of Wednesday morning car accidents this week left one man dead and Massachusetts State Police busy from accident to accident during the morning commute.

The most severe of four accidents involved a 46-year-old man from Derry, John Perry. After losing control of his vehicle on Route 3, he crossed over an exit ramp in Tynsgborough, crossed the median, rear-ended another vehicle, and then tumbled into the side embankment. Perry was pronounced deceased at the scene of the accident. State Police report that the accident is under investigation but Perry might have suffered from a medical condition that led him to lose control of his vehicle.

Another crash, on Interstate-93 South, was a two-car crash near Ballardvale Street in Wilmington at 6:45 a.m. One person was taken to the hospital for minor injuries.

The third accident involved a commercial vehicle and a 2008 Pontiac Grand Am. William Gurrisi Jr., 48, from Haverhill, was driving the commercial vehicle and Rosalie Papoutsy, 73, from Atkinson, was driving the Pontiac. Gurrisi was transported to Lawrence General Hospital for his injuries. Both vehicles were towed from the scene of the accident. The accident is under investigation and the cause of the accident is not yet known.

The final accident occurred at 6:50 a.m. on Interstate-93 South near Dascomb Road. Thomas Judd, 58, from Lowell was driving his 1998 Buick Regal when it caught fire. He was able to pull over to the side of the road and escape without any injuries before the vehicle was fully engulfed in flames. The Andover Fire Department was able to extinguish the fire and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

Although the causes of all of these early morning accidents are under investigation, it is important to be aware of common early morning driving hazards and to never drive when fatigued.

• Do not start your journey tired.
• Do not continue to operate your vehicle if you become tired while driving. Pull over to a safe rest stop as soon as possible.
• Plan at least 15-minute breaks every two hours for long drives.
• Opening the window for fresh air or turning up the radio are only sufficient until you find a place to pull over.

If you have been in a Massachusetts car accident in which fatigue may have been a factor, contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Source:

Derry man dies in Mass. accident, The Eagle-Tribune, April 28, 2011

Continue reading "Series of Early Morning Commute Accidents in Massachusetts Leave One Dead and Several Injured" »

April 27, 2011

Fall River Woman Killed In Single-Car Crash

A single-car accident on Route 24 in Fall River is under investigation in which one woman has died. The only person in the crash, Alexandra Medeiros, 20, from Fall River, was driving North on Route 24 in the early afternoon when her 2002 Nissan Altima crashed into woods on the side of the road.

According to State Trooper Lori-Ann Wheaton’s preliminary investigation, the engine subsequently caught fire due to the crash. Three State Troopers who were at a nearby location responded to the radio dispatch and were able to extinguish the fire. Medeiros was trapped inside until emergency crews were able to extract her from the wreckage. She was then taken to Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River where she was pronounced dead.

Although it is still under investigation, high speed is being considered as a possible reason for the crash. Troop D of the Massachusetts State Police, the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, and the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, are all contributing to the investigation.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), speeding is one of the most common reasons for car accidents. The NHTSA estimates that the economic cost of speed-related crashes is $40.4 billion per year. Speeding was the cause of 31 percent of all fatal crashes in 2008 and in that same year, 11,674 people died in speed-related car accidents.

If you or your loved one has been involved in a fatal Massachusetts car accident, contact an experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

Fall River woman killed in fiery crash on Route 24, Bridgewater Independent, April 25, 2011

Police ID woman who died in Route 24 crash, Taunton Gazette, April 26, 2011

Driver Education, Speeding, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

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April 25, 2011

Drunk Driver Kills Two Teens Not Wearing Seatbelts in Somerville

After a single-car accident at 3:30 a.m. on Friday in Somerville, two teenage girls aged 16 and 17 have died. The first teenager died at the scene of the accident, and the second died on Saturday at Massachusetts General Hospital from her injuries sustained from the crash. Their names have not been released. State Police report that neither girl was wearing a seatbelt.

The teenagers were passengers of Kenneth W. Belew, 21, of Somerville. David Procopio, State Police spokesman, said Belew faces two charges of motor vehicle homicide, drunken driving, a marked lane violation and speeding. He is scheduled to be arraigned today in Somerville District Court. Three other passengers, Jerry Altidor, 21, from Somerville, Rafaela Pereira, 19, from Everett, and Rudolph Reis, 20, from Somerville, were all wearing their seatbelts and sustained only minor injuries.

State Police report that this is not Belew´s first driving violation. He has been cited seven times for speeding, violating lane markings, driving without an inspection sticker, and a seat belt infraction.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that car accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers in the U.S. and are the cause for more than one in three deaths for teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19. In 2009, eight teenagers in this age group died from car accidents every day. They further report that in 2008, three out of every four teenagers killed in car crashes after drinking and driving were not wearing a seat belt.

If you or your loved one has been involved in a Massachusetts car accident, it is advised that you contact a Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

2d teen in Somerville crash dies of injuries, The Boston Globe, April 25, 2011

Teen Drivers, Injury Prevention & Control: Motor Vehicle Safety, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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April 12, 2011

Massachusetts Woman Arrested for Driving Under the Influence and Causing Fatal Accident on I-395

A fatal two-car accident on Interstate 395 is under investigation. Police report that Dina Senibaldi, 26, of Everett, Massachusetts, was driving southbound between exits 77 and 78 when she hit the car in front of her. She was arrested at the scene for driving while under the influence, and for possession of marijuana and narcotics. Although she refused medical treatment, her passenger, Marirose Lynch, 25, also from Everett, was taken to Lawrence & Memorial Hospital for a cut on her forehead.

The car that Senibaldi hit was carrying Edmund L. Davis, 52, from New Haven, Connecticut, and Lisa Delprete, 45, from North Haven, Connecticut. Davis lost control of his vehicle after the impact and crashed into the guardrail on the passenger’s side of the vehicle where Delprete was seated. Delprete was reportedly taken to Lawrence & Memorial Hospital for severe head injuries. She was pronounced dead later that day. Davis was also taken to Lawrence & Memorial Hospital for severe head and chest injuries. State police report that because of the severity of his injuries, he has been transported to Yale New Haven Hospital and is in critical condition.

The Department of Transportation reports that the accident happened just after 11 p.m. on Friday night. Emergency personnel requested for a medical helicopter but it was too cloudy for flight.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that almost one-third of all traffic deaths involve drunk or impaired drivers. If you have been injured in an accident, contact on of our experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyers for a free consultation.

Alleged Drunk Driving Accident Claims Life of North Haven Woman, North Haven Patch, April 9, 2011

Impaired Driving, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Continue reading "Massachusetts Woman Arrested for Driving Under the Influence and Causing Fatal Accident on I-395" »

April 6, 2011

Fatal Hit And Run Accident in Dorchester Kills 39-Year-Old Mother

A fatal accident in Dorchester is under investigation in which a 39-year-old mother was killed. The other passenger in the car was the sister of the deceased. Police report that the accident was caused by another driver who fled the scene. The sister informed authorities that they slammed into a tree after they were hit by another car who was trying to pass them. The hit and run accident occurred at the corner of Washington Street and School Street, at approximately 2:30 a.m. on Saturday.

In the event of an accident in Massachusetts, drivers are required by law to stop at the scene of the accident and exchange information with the other driver. If the accident occurred on someone’s property, then the driver is also required to exchange information with the owner of the property that was damaged. It is illegal for a driver to flee the scene of an accident. The minimum punishment for fleeing the scene of an accident resulting in death is 2 and a half years of imprisonment and a fine of no no less than $1,000.

Boston Police are searching for a small to medium-sized black car that was seen within the vicinity of the accident.

If you are the victim of a hit and run accident, contact on of our experienced Boston hit and run accident attorneys for a free consultation.

Source:

Mother of 3 killed in hit and run, FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com, April 4, 2011

Continue reading "Fatal Hit And Run Accident in Dorchester Kills 39-Year-Old Mother" »

March 31, 2011

Man Responsible For Fatal Somerville 2007 Car Accident Found Guilty of Manslaughter

Earlier this week, a man responsible for a 2007 fatal car accident in Somerville was sentenced to 15 to 20 years in state prison, after which he has a 15-year probation on the condition that he is not allowed to operate a vehicle or does not try to reinstate his driver’s license. According to the Office of Middlesex District Attorney Gerard Leone, Javier Morales, 29, from Somerville, pleaded guilty to two counts of manslaughter, driving with a suspended license, subsequent offense, and failure to stop for a police officer.

Morales caused the accident in May 2007 by failing to pull over for State Police on Route 16, who then proceeded to pursue him through Somerville. It is reported that he was driving 76 mph without his headlights on at about 1:30 a.m. before he crashed his SUV into a taxi. The driver of the taxi was Walid Chahine, 45, of Methuen, and the passengers were Paul Farris, 23, of Medford and a woman who has remained unidentified. Both Chahine and Farris died from their injuries incurred in this accident and the woman was extensively hospitalized. She is said to still be affected by her injuries from the accident. All passengers in the taxi were wearing their seatbelts but the force and speed at which Morales was traveling caused an impact that the seatbelts could not withhold.

In a statement released by District Attorney Gerard Leone, he explained that “This defendant pleaded guilty to causing a horrific car crash that resulted in the death of two innocent men and left a third victim with life-long injuries…This defendant had numerous opportunities to stop for the police officer, yet continued to make decisions to drive unsafely at high rates of speed through densely-populated areas, endangering those around him. By pleading guilty today, this defendant is admitting to these troubling charges and will remain off the roads and out of communities for an extensive period of time.”

If you or your loved one has been injured in an accident because of a negligent driver, our experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyers are here to help with over 25 years of experience and a free consultation.

Source:

Driver In Somerville Motor Vehicle Crash Pleads Guilty To Two Counts of Manslaughter, Office of Middlesex District Attorney Gerard Leone Press Release, March 28, 2011

Continue reading "Man Responsible For Fatal Somerville 2007 Car Accident Found Guilty of Manslaughter" »

March 30, 2011

Boston Commuter Train Crashes With Elderly Woman's Car in Train Crossing

A recent Holbrook, Massachusetts, car-train accident is under investigation involving a Boston-bound commuter train and an elderly woman who has died from her injuries. According to authorities, Ann Kireilis, 91, from Brockton, was crossing the train tracks near the Holbrook-Avon border at the East High Street crossing when the train collided with the car at about 11:45 a.m. In a statement released by MBTA, spokesman Joe Pesaturo said that the warning gates were down and investigators found that the crossing’s warning system was activated 39 seconds prior to the arrival of the northbound train at the crossing. He said the engineer applied the emergency brake when he saw the car, but was unable to fully stop before hitting the car. Holbrook Fire Chief Edward O’Brien reported that Kireilis appeared to be driving over the rail crossing west toward Avon at the time. He said, "I don’t know if she misjudged the (crossing) gate, it’s tough to tell."

No one on the train was injured and the commuter train continued its trip to Boston around 1 p.m. with approximately 130 passengers aboard.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 15% of all traffic fatalities in 2008 were seniors, aged 65 or older. Approximately 80% of all traffic fatalities involving older drivers happened during the daytime, 72% occurred on weekdays, and 69% were involving other vehicles. Because the NHTSA predicts that there will be approximately 40 million drivers who are 65 or older by 2020, the organization provides detailed resources for elderly drivers and has created an Older Driver Program Five-Year Strategic Plan 2012-2017. The goals of this program are to build communications for older drivers and caretakers, create and maintain partnerships to help older driver safety, and to expand driver-licensing procedures.

Additional resources to promote safer senior driving include information on:

• How to talk with older drivers about their driving capabilities
• Medications and older drivers
• Screening and evaluations
• Toolkit for driving safely
• Driving when you suffer from a condition that could inhibit safe driving, such as Alzheimers, Parkinsons, or a previous stroke

If you have been injured in an accident, contact one of our Massachusetts vehicle accident lawyers for a free consultation.

Source:

Brockton woman, 91, dies following car-train crash in Holbrook, The Patriot Ledger, March 18, 2011

Driver Safety, Senior Driving, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Continue reading "Boston Commuter Train Crashes With Elderly Woman's Car in Train Crossing " »

March 28, 2011

Fatal Accident Closes Sumner Tunnel in Boston

Late on Sunday night, a single car crashed inside the Sumner Tunnel in Boston, resulting in the death of an unidentified man. Around 10 p.m., State Police responded to the scene of the fatal accident, which shut down the Storrow Drive ramp. Authorities confirmed that the car, identified as a white pick-up truck, was heading towards Storrow Drive when it crashed into the side of the tunnel.

Although the cause of the accident has not yet been determined, witnesses reported that the driver was speeding. Roman Wunderlich, a witness who was first passed by the truck and the only other vehicle in the tunnel at the time of the accident, said, “He didn't stop, he didn't brake, nothing…no screeching tires, there was nothing, he just went right into the wall…I’d say he was probably going about 100 miles an hour.” A second witness arrived at the scene of the accident and pulled up next to Wunderlich who warned him of the deadly accident up ahead. The second witness asked him if it was a white pick-up truck as he had just seen him speed through the toll booth just minutes before. The driver has not been identified yet and authorities have not found a driver’s license at the scene of the accident.

The Storrow Drive ramp inside the Sumner Tunnel has been the site of other fatal accidents in the past. In November 2009, a woman died and two were seriously injured in an accident and another crash in February 2008 killed a man and injured three more.

If you or your loved one has been injured in a car accident, please do not hesitate to contact one of our experienced Boston car fatality lawyers for a free consultation.

Sources:

Crash in Boston’s Sumner Tunnel kills 1 person, Boston Herald, March 28, 2011

One dead after crash in Sumner Tunnel, Boston Globe, March 27, 2011

1 dies in crash in Sumner Tunnel, 7-News, whdh.com, March 28, 2011

Continue reading "Fatal Accident Closes Sumner Tunnel in Boston" »

March 23, 2011

UConn Student from Westminster, Massachusetts, Killed by Campus Shuttle Bus

On Tuesday night, a University of Connecticut shuttle bus struck and killed a student from Westminster, Massachusetts at an intersection on campus. The UConn student, 20-year-old David N. Plamondon, was living off campus. The bus hit Plamondon in the intersection of Hillside Road and Alumni Drive by the North Parking Garage on campus at approximately 8:15 p.m. A witness of the fatal accident immediately called the campus police. Campus police arrived at the scene of the accident with emergency crews and administered first aid but could not save him as his injuries were so severe. Although the cause of the accident is unknown and the case is under investigation, a medical examiner will determine the cause of the Plamondon’s death.

Major Ronald Blicher, of the UConn Police, said, "There were witnesses to the accident…They are being interviewed by police…The bus driver is being interviewed by police." Police do not believe that the UConn women’s basketball game on campus was related to this accident or that the victim had been to the game. No charges have been filed yet.

Pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers should always use extra caution on campuses and especially after dark. On Boston University’s campus website, students are reminded of the following pedestrian safety tips:

• Be careful when crossing streets and tracks.
• Always use pedestrian crosswalks.
• Look left and right for cars, bikes, and trolleys before crossing the street.
• Always be alert when using personal electronic devices.
• Walk in well-lit areas at night.
• Use an escort security service or walk with a friend to your destination.

If you or your loved one has been injured or killed in an accident, please feel free to contact one of our Massachusetts traffic fatality lawyers who can help you with their 25 years of experience.

Sources:

UConn student from Mass. killed by shuttle bus, Boston Herald, March 23, 2011

UConn student struck, killed by bus, ctpost.com, March 23, 2011

On and Off Campus Safety Tips, Boston University, Dean of Students

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March 21, 2011

Plymouth Man Sentenced for Fatal Crash in 2008

Two and a half years after a fatal accident on Mt. Hope Bridge, Jamie Pretti of Plymouth has been charged with one count of driving under the influence resulting in death and to leaving the scene of the accident resulting in death. On September 12, 2008, Jamie Pretti was driving with his friend, Timothy Macleod, of Plymouth, from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth to Roger Williams University for a party. Pretty is reported to have lost control of his vehicle when he tried to pass another vehicle on the Mt. Hope Bridge, resulting in the death of Macleod. The Office of the Attorney General said that a breath test confirmed that Pretti’s blood alcohol was more than twice the legal limit.

Since the accident, Pretti has been out on $100,000 surety bail but is now in the custody of the Department of Corrections. Pretti pleaded no contest to his sentence of 15 years, with seven to serve, three and a half of which will be held at Adult Correctional Institutions and three and a half years on home confinement. He also lost his license for five years and has been ordered to pay $5,000 in fines.

Drinking and consumption of alcohol on or around campuses affect almost all college campuses. College Drinking Prevention reports that approximately 3,360,000 college students drive under the influence of alcohol in one year. The National Institutes on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), a part of the National Institutes of Health, has recently conducted research projects in which colleges and their surrounding communities attempt to reduce excessive alcohol consumption by targeting local drinking settings and implementing prevention strategies in an attempt to minimize college-related alcohol abuse and drunk driving.

If you or your loved one has been injured in a car accident, please do not hesitate to contact one of our experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyers for a free consultation.

Massachusetts Man Sentenced in Connection with Fatal Crash on Mt. Hope Bridge, Bristol-Warren Patch, March 14, 2011

NIH-Supported Study finds Strategies to Reduce College Drinking, National Institutes of Health, November 11, 2010

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March 16, 2011

State Senator Katherine Clark Calls for Clearer Drunk Driving Laws in Massachusetts

In an effort to make Massachusetts drunk driving laws easier to understand and apply, State Senator Katherine Clark has called for legislation that would make the laws more comprehensible. In Massachusetts, impaired driving laws have been amended 69 times and continue to become more confusing and repeated in many places. For example, when the legislation was changed in 2005 for repeat drunk driving, not only did it adopt the new name, “Melanie’s Law,” in memory of 13-year old Melanie Powell who was killed by a repeat drunk driver, but the change added eight new sections and seven new categories of amendments to the law that was already ambiguous. As a result, the law can be construed and interpreted in many different ways.

In an article written by State Senator Clark in today’s Boston Globe, Clark writes that: “…judges, prosecutors and defense counsel struggle to apply the law. Most experts agree that the content of the law is solid, but the language needs to be re-worked to ensure protections against drunk drivers.” She continues to say, “In an effort to reorganize the Commonwealth’s OUI laws, I have filed An Act to Protect the Citizens of the Commonwealth from Drunk Drivers.” She argues that this call to clarify the law will not change the substance, criminal sentences, or penalties, but will rather make it easier to understand and use in order to protect citizens from drunk drivers.

There are approximately 13,000 Massachusetts drivers who are convicted of drinking and driving each year. In 2008 alone, there were 363 traffic fatalities due to drunk driving in Massachusetts. State Senator Clark asserts that this legislation will improve the drunk driving law to “protect the citizens of the Commonwealth.”

If you have been injured in an accident, please feel free to contact one of our experienced lawyers for a free consultation.

Source:

Clark calls for clarifying drunk driving laws, The Boston Globe, March 16, 2011

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March 9, 2011

Rear-End Accident Turns Fatal in Lynnfield

In Lynnfield, Massachusetts, a fender-bender turned into a fatal accident. After a taxi rear-ended a Chevrolet Cobalt, both of the drivers pulled over and exited their vehicles to inspect the damage. William Halpin III, 25, from Melrose, who was under the influence of drugs in a passing vehicle, hit both the taxi driver and the parked Cobalt. The taxi driver, from Lynn, died after he was taken to the hospital. Police arrested Halpin for vehicular homicide and for driving under the influence. The other injured victim was a six-year-old boy who was sitting in the Cobalt when it was struck by Halpin.

When pulled over on the side of the road, it is very important to assess the situation of passing vehicles. Although the driver in this case was under the influence, one must always look carefully for oncoming traffic. Remember to turn on your hazard lights and carry the necessary roadside accident supplies in your trunk, such as a reflective hazard indicator to put on the street and a reflective florescent vest.

In the event of a collision, Sheila Varnado, of the Driving School Association of the
Americas, suggests the following:

• Make sure that you are out of harm's way. Once you are outside of your vehicle, you are at risk of being hit by oncoming traffic.
• If you are disoriented or injured, stay in the car.
• First check yourself for injuries, then check others.
• Only provide medical assistance that you are capable of and trained in. Vernado says: "Anytime you're involved in a collision, only render aid within your ability."
• Call 911. You are required to call the police or highway patrol if anyone is injured. Dial 911, or program the highway-patrol number into your cell-phone.
• Write down the other driver’s name, address, date of birth, phone number, car make and model, and license plate number. Varnado says, "Get the full information of all drivers, passengers, and witnesses…This includes driver's license numbers, vehicle registration and proof of insurance with policy number."
• For legal and insurance purposes, take pictures using a cell-phone or disposable camera. That way, Varnado says, you can "see how the intersection looked, the weather conditions, icy roads, exactly how much damage was done to the cars, the position of the vehicles, where the vehicles ended up, and the severity of the collision for example."
• Inform your insurance company.

If you have been injured in an accident and would like a free consultation, feel free to contact one of our attorneys who have over 25 years of experience representing car accident victims.

Sources:

Car accident in Lynnfield, Mass. claims one life, NECN, March 5, 2011

What to do if you get into an accident, The Boston Globe

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February 28, 2011

Victims of Fatal Crash Not Wearing Seatbelts

Massachusetts State Police are investigating a fatal accident in which Karla Nieves-Vazquez, 23, and Jesus Nieves, 17, both of Springfield, were killed on Interstate-91. Police believe that neither Nieves-Vasquez or Nieves were wearing seatbelts. In this single-car crash, it is reported that Nieves-Vasquez lost control of her 2002 Dodge Stratus. The car turned over multiple times and then landed in the ditch of the median. The car’s other two occupants, Jesus A. Ferreira, 20, and Martin A. Nieves, 18, also of Springfield, were taken to Baystate Medical Center for medical attention.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that seatbelts save over 13,000 lives per year. In 2006, over 60% of victims of fatal car crashes between the ages of 16-24 were not wearing seatbelts. These lives could have been saved if they were wearing seatbelts. The NHTSA provides the following life-saving reminders on the importance of seatbelt safety:

• Wearing your seatbelt is the best thing you can do to protect yourself in an accident
• Airbags are not designed to replace seatbelts
• Buckle-up correctly; the lap belt and shoulder belt should be secure across the pelvis and rib cage, which can endure crash forces better than other parts of your body
• Make sure your seatbelt fits; you can obtain belt extenders or a new shoulder belt from your car dealer or manufacturer
• Age or condition is not an excuse; everyone should wear a seatbelt. There are effective ways for pregnant women, obese, and eldery, to safely buckle-up. Visit A Parent's Guide to Child Safety on
how to safely buckle-up your child.

Our experienced lawyers have over 25 years of knowledge representing car accident victims throughout Massachusetts. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have a question on a case or would like a free consultation.

Sources:

I-91 crash victims identified, WWLP-22News, February 25, 2011

The top 5 things you should know about buckling up, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

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February 24, 2011

Fatal Three-Car Pile-Up in Peabody

At 6:44 a.m. on Wednesday morning, a three-car accident on Route 128 resulted in the death of Wallace Arnott, a 56-year-old man from Haverhill. Dr. Joshua Namias, who was on his way to Salem Hospital for work, pulled over and provided assistance alongside an unidentified nurse, who had also pulled over to help. They were able to provide CPR for Arnott until paramedics arrived.

Arnott was first taken to Salem Hospital, and then transferred to Massachusetts General Hospital where he was pronounced dead in the early afternoon. Arnott was driving a 2005 Chevrolet Aveo, which is a small car. The other two vehicles involved were a 1996 Jeep Cherokee and a 2002 Chevrolet Venture minivan. Kenneth Weeden of Peabody, was the driver of the Jeep and was taken to Salem Hospital for serious injuries. The driver of the minivan, Rita Tavarez, was not injured. Although the crash is under investigation, state police have confirmed that the accident was a series of rear-end accidents.

State police, the Peabody Fire Department, and the Massachusetts Highway Division, all responded to the scene of the accident.

Reported shortly after this crash in the northbound lanes, an accident in the parallel southbound lanes occurred. There were no serious injuries reported in the second crash and both lanes were cleared by 10:30 a.m.

Our lawyers have over 25 years of experience representing clients throughout Massachusetts who have been involved in car accidents. Please feel free to contact us if you have a question in regards to a case and would like a free consultation.

Source:

Man killed, 1 injured in crash on Route 128 Gloucester Times, February 23, 2011

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February 22, 2011

Alcohol Detection System Being Developed to Promote Safe Driving

QinetiQ North America, a research and development company based in Waltham, is developing a system that can sense a driver’s blood alcohol level and prevent the car from moving if the driver’s alcohol content is at or above the .08 legal limit. The system, the Driver Alcohol Detection Systems for Safety, will use sensors on the steering wheel and door locks to determine the driver’s blood alcohol level via skin contact.

David Strickland, the director of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), said that the technology could prevent as many as 9,000 fatal alcohol-related crashes a year in the United States. In 2008 alone, 42% of Massachusetts driving fatalities were the result of drinking and driving. Alcohol-related accidents continue to plague the state.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood recently visited the Waltham facility for a public demonstration of the system, during which the system was tested and displayed. Strickland, who was also at the demonstration, said that although the device is in the early stages of development and that it will not be available for another few years, he emphasized that it will not be released until it is "seamless, unobtrusive and unfailingly accurate." LaHood said that the alcohol detection system is "another arrow in our automotive safety quiver," as it is envisioned to deter drinking and driving for the future.

Our experienced lawyers represent clients throughout Massachusetts who have been in alcohol-related accidents. If you have a question in regards to a case and would like a free consultation, please feel free to contact us.

Source:

In Future, Cars Might Decide If Driver Is Drunk,National Public Radio, The Associated Press, January 29, 2011


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February 14, 2011

Northborough Woman Dies in I-95 Accident

Claudette J. Kumor, 57, of Northborough was ejected from her car after being rear-ended on I-95 in Attleboro early on Saturday morning. Kumor lost control of her 2004 Ford Explorer when hit from behind by Samantha Lee Fletcher, 19, of Danvers, in the slow lane of traffic. The SUV is reported to have flipped over many times and Kumor was ejected from the vehicle. Authorities have confirmed that Kumor was not wearing a seatbelt and was confirmed dead when the emergency crew arrived. Her passenger, Carolyn P. Bibbo, 34, of Woonsocket, R.I., was trapped inside the wreckage and then taken to Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, R.I., for serious injuries. Fletcher was not injured in the accident.

The accident is under investigation and police are considering Fletcher’s speed as the cause of the accident. No charges have been made.

Our attorneys have been representing personal injury and accident victims for over 40 years. Feel free to contact us to speak to one of our experienced attorneys for a free consultation.

Sources:

Northborough woman killed in crash on I-95 in Attleborough this morning, The Boston Globe, February 12, 2011

Northborough woman killed in crash on I-95 in Attleboro, The Milford Daily News, February 12, 2011

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December 17, 2010

33-year-old Killed in SUV Rollover on Route 128

Matthew M. Cox, a 33-year-old from Westwood, was killed in an SUV rollover on Route 128 Wednesday. The rollover occurred around 4 p.m. when his Ford Explorer, which was travelling in the left lane, veered to the right and hit a guardrail. Cox was ejected from the SUV and declared dead at Needham’s Beth Israel Deaconess-Glover Hospital. He hadn’t been wearing a seatbelt, according to police.

Boston Globe, One killed in rollover on Route 128 in Needham

This is one of many rollovers that have happened in recent weeks. Notably, Ford Explorers have been the subject of design-defect controversy in the past, given the frequency of Explorer rollovers, but NHTSA reported that Explorers are no more likely than other SUVs to roll over.

When a rollover happens after hitting a guardrail, as here, it is called a “tripped rollover.” Of all rollovers, 95% are tripped rollovers.

This story raises the issue of driver/occupant ejection. When persons are ejected from vehicles in accidents, they are three times more likely to die than persons who are not ejected. They are also far more likely to suffer catastrophic injuries like traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. Here, Cox was not wearing a seatbelt. Sometimes, though, even those who wear seatbelts are ejected from their cars and trucks because of seatbelt defects. Defective door latches can also cause occupant ejection.

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December 15, 2010

Pedestrian Killed in Chelsea Hit-and-Run

Julio Vaquerano, a 36-year-old from Revere, was killed in a Chelsea hit-and-run Tuesday night. A car hit Vaquerano around 10 p.m. near the intersection of Blossom and Maple streets and fled the scene. Vaquerano died of his injuries at Massachusetts General Hospital. Chelsea and state police are investigating and asking for informational tips.

Source: Boston.com, Man killed by hit-and-run driver in Chelsea

This is a tragic, and unfortunately, largely characteristic pedestrian accident. The vast majority of pedestrian accidents happen in urban areas, like Chelsea, between 6 p.m. and midnight. Fatalities are such a strong possibility in pedestrian accidents because pedestrians don’t have anything protecting their bodies from injury. When a pedestrian is struck by a car and killed, the driver may be liable. Here, in addition to the criminal charges that this driver will ultimately face when caught, he could find himself involved in a wrongful death action.

At Altman & Altman, our Massachusetts wrongful death lawyers have what it takes to handle these complex cases. We understand that if you have lost a family member, no amount of money will ever bring him/her back or ease your emotional pain. We also know that medical treatments, the process of laying your loved one to rest, and losing his/her earnings can put a huge financial burden on you, and damages may help with that.

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December 7, 2010

Crash on Route 24 in Taunton Leaves a New Bedford Man Dead

A 28-year-old New Bedford man was killed in a Taunton car crash today. State police say the accident occurred when an 81-year-old Rhode Island woman lost control of her Buick Century while exiting Route 24 onto Route 140 north. They say she drove across a median and slammed into the driver’s side door of the man’s Oldsmobile Bravada SUV, causing a rollover. The man was ejected from the vehicle. He was not wearing a seatbelt. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Providence’s Rhode Island Hospital, and the woman suffered serious injuries. No one is facing civil or criminal consequences yet, but the investigation continues.

This is the second Massachusetts fatal car accident in weeks involving an elderly driver. About 8 percent of fatal crashes in our state involve a driver over the age of 75. Of course, this may be because elderly persons are less likely to survive a crash than younger individuals. Still, some may be alarmed by the fact that drivers age 75 or older account for 7 percent of license holders and 3.6 percent of all crashes in our state.

There are many possible factors that contribute to the frequency of older-driver accidents. As we age, it may become more difficult to see or read signs, navigate complex intersections and stay alert. Health conditions such as hearing and vision loss, dementia, and decreased reaction time (as well as taking medications to treat medical conditions) can cause elderly-driver crashes.

No matter our ages, we can all decrease dangers to others and ourselves by making sure that we are able to drive safely before we get on the road.

Sources:
Wickedlocal.com, New Bedford man dies after Route 24 on-ramp crash in Taunton

The Boston Globe, New Bedford man killed in Route 24 crash in Taunton, State Police say

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December 7, 2010

Shrewsbury Teen Killed in Morning Accident

A 16-year-old junior at Shrewsbury High School was killed today when his 2002 Honda Accord crashed into a Central Street tree near Woodland Estates. The teen, a student leader and member of the Shrewsbury High golf team, was the only occupant of the car. Authorities aren’t sure whether or not he was on his way to school. He was flown by LifeFlight to UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester and died shortly later.

There was one witness to the crash, and Boylston and state police are investigating the incident.

The principal of Shrewsbury High e-mailed parents about the death, and the school is making counselors available for students.

As an earlier blog post notes, teens have the highest fatal car accident rate of all age groups.
Every year, more than 5,000 persons between the ages of 16 and 20 are killed in crashes, and 400,000 are injured. Teen drivers are four times (per mile driven) more likely to crash than other drivers. Teen-aged males, like this student, and their passengers are significantly more likely than their female peers to become involved in fatal car accidents. Although this accident occurred on a school day, most teen- driver car crashes take place over the weekend between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. As far as school day accidents go, a new study indicates that earlier school start times may increase teen car accident rates. This is not very surprising, as fatigue is a common cause of car accidents in all age groups.

Source: Telegram.com, Shrewsbury High student killed in morning crash

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December 2, 2010

Beverly Woman Killed and Two Seriously Injured in Mass. Ave. Bridge Head-On Collision

Christina Anderson, a 79-year-old Beverly woman, was killed in a head-on collision yesterday. Cheryl Anderson-Young, a 58-year-old of Beverly, and Ibrahim Nabile, a 46-year-old of Malden, were seriously injured in the crash.

The accident occurred on Massachusetts Avenue Bridge in the Back Bay around 5:40 p.m. Anderson-Young, driving a 1997 Lexus travelling from Cambridge to Boston, crossed the line and crashed into Nabile’s 2008 Ford Crown Victoria taxi. Anderson was declared dead at the scene, while Anderson-Young was taken to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Nabile was taken to Boston Medical Center. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

Head-on collisions like this one frequently cause serious and fatal injuries. There are two ways that head-on collisions can happen. As was the case here, a driver can fail to stay in his/her own lane and go forward into oncoming traffic. A head-on collision can also happen in a wrong-way type of scenario where a driver ventures down a one way in the wrong direction, enters the highway on an off-ramp exit instead of the on-ramp, etc.

Usually when there is a lane departure head-on collision, the cause is swerving, driver distraction, inattention or fatigue, or passing other cars in an unsafe manner. Head-on collisions can result in catastrophic injuries including spinal and head injuries, serious fractures, internal injuries, and more. If you have been hurt in a head-on collision, our Massachusetts car accident lawyers can tell you whether you have a claim, investigate, and begin building your case for recovery.

Source: The Boston Globe, Beverly woman killed, 2 hurt in crash

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November 8, 2010

Brockton Man Killed in SUV Rollover

A 57-year-old man from Brockton was killed this morning when his 2002 Nissan Pathfinder hit a guardrail and rolled over on I-495 in Raynham. A tractor- trailer unit driven by 46-year-old Kevin Anthony of Woburn hit the SUV when it rolled into a traffic lane.

Police are still investigating the cause of the crash, but it happened when the roads were wet.

Even though some car crashes result only in damage to property, many like this one cause death or serious injury like spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, broken bones, severed limbs, and burns. Car accidents can happen at any time, blindsiding people on a routine Monday-morning commute. At Altman & Altman LLP, we have successfully handled thousands of personal injury and wrongful death cases arising from car crashes.

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September 22, 2010

Massachusetts Woman Injured in Motorcycle Crash

On Sunday afternoon, a collision between a sport utility vehicle and a motorcycle killed a man and injured a woman from Pepperell, Massachusetts. Police responded to the traffic accident in Milford, New Hampshire after a southbound motorcycle collided with a northbound SUV.

The man driving the motorcycle was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident, and his passenger, the 36-year-old woman from Pepperell, was airlifted to a Massachusetts hospital with injuries police say as not life-threatening.

The cause of the fatal motorcycle accident is still under investigation.

Sources: Motorcycle wreck kills NH man, injures Mass. woman, Boston Herald, September 20, 2010

Lyndeborough man dies in motorcycle crash, UnionLeader.com, September 20, 2010

The Massachusetts motorcycle injury attorneys at Altman & Altman can explain your legal options if you have been involved in a motorcycle, bus, car, or other type of accident.

September 16, 2010

Framingham Highway Worker Killed by Alleged Drunk Driver

A Massachusetts man who had emigrated from Russia and now worked for the Department of Transportation died in an alleged drunk driving accident earlier this week. The truck accident occurred on Tuesday night around 10:43pm in a construction zone on Route 9. The worker was checking the pavement temperature as part of quality control when he was hit by a red Ford pickup truck.

According to court records, the construction job site had barrels and reflective cones set up around the perimeter. The truck accident victim lay bleeding in the breakdown lane as other workers chased after the truck driver, who reportedly fled to a nearby Dunkin’ Donuts. Workers and police did not realize that the man had been hit until a truck driver delivering asphalt noticed the body on the road and alerted police.

The worker was pronounced dead at the scene of the workplace accident.

Source: 2 held in death of highway worker, Boston Globe, September 16, 2010

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September 15, 2010

Jeep Rollover on Sandy Neck Beach Leaves 1 Dead

This past week, a Jeep rolled over on Sandy Neck Beach in West Barnstable, landing in the ocean. There were three individuals traveling in the Jeep at the time of the accident. One of the passengers, a 39-year-old resident of Forestdale, was pronounced dead at the scene.

One of the other passengers, who is also a resident of Forestdale, was taken to Cape Cod Hospital where he received treatment for a broken leg.

The third passenger in the Jeep was not injured. This man, a 28-year-old from Sandwich, was the only one of the three in the Jeep who was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident.

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September 10, 2010

Massachusetts Traffic Fatality Attorneys Discuss Roadway Statistics

Statistics released by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration show that deaths from roadway accidents are on the decline. Here in Massachusetts, the number of deaths on all roads declined from 476 in 2004 to 363 in 2008, the most recent year for which statistics are available. In Norfolk County, motor vehicle deaths dropped from 46 to 27 during that same period.

Traffic experts attribute this trend to the use air bags and other automotive technology, as well as greater enforcement of traffic laws.

However, the number of Massachusetts fatalities on major arterial roads and interstate highways actually increased from 2003 to 2008. Experts say these major roads pose additional hazards because of faster speeds and the fact that many motorists routinely drive 10 mph or more over the speed limit but can’t react fast enough to avert an accident.

Source: Safer by the mile?, The Sun Chronicle, September 5, 2010

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September 9, 2010

Westport Man Killed in Single Vehicle Crash

This past weekend, a single vehicle accident claimed the life of a Massachusetts man near his home in Westport. The car crash occurred on Robert Street around 2pm on Saturday.

The crash victim was identified as a 64-year-old man who would have turned 65 on Tuesday. He was driving his 1990 Buick sound on Robert Street when his vehicle left the roadway, hitting a chain link fence. The crash send the Buick across both lanes of Robert Street and killed the driver.

Westport police and the Massachusetts State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Team are still investigating the cause of the fatal crash.

Source: Just before his birthday, man dies in crash, EastBayRI.com, September 7, 2010

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September 7, 2010

Man Held in Massachusetts After His Truck Hits and Kills a State Trooper

Last weekend, a fatal accident on Interstate 91 resulted in the arrest of a 32-year-old Connecticut man who allegedly caused the traffic accident that killed a state trooper. The trooper had been a 22-year veteran of the state police, according to an article in the Norwich Bulletin.

The trooper had pulled over another driver, when the truck driver reportedly slammed into his cruiser, sideswiping the car that was pulled over, and rolling onto the shoulder. The driver of the truck was being treated for injuries at Bayside Medical Center in Springfield, Massachusetts, where he is being guarded by Massachusetts troopers. Bail has been set at $50,000.

The man has an arrest and motor vehicle violation record in Connecticut, and a Connecticut state police spokesperson said the investigation continues.

Sources: Conn. man accused in fatal crash held in Mass., Boston Herald, September 5, 2010

State trooper killed in Enfield had eastern CT ties, Norwich Bulletin, September 5, 2010

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September 4, 2010

Two Killed in Fatal Car Accident in Westport

Two motorists were killed this past Tuesday afternoon in Westport. The fatal car accident, which occurred on Route 195, involved two-vehicles.

One of the drivers, a 75-year-old resident of Fall River, suffered severe injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The other motorist, a 61-year-old woman from Somerset, was airlifted to Rhode Island hospital for treatment. Unfortunately, the woman succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced dead at the hospital later that evening.

The accident occurred at approximately 4:25 p.m. According to the preliminary investigation, the individual from Fall River was traveling in the eastbound lane of Route 195 in a Nissan Quest when the vehicle crossed the grass median onto the westbound lanes. The Nissan then struck the 2007 Chevrolet Equinox being operated by the Somerset women.

The accident caused that section of the highway to be shut down for approximately two hours. The Massachusetts State Police are currently investigating the automobile accident.

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August 30, 2010

Two Killed in high-speed collision in Revere

Saturday morning, a police chase that began in Chelsea resulted in the deaths of two individuals in Revere. The preliminary investigation states that the suspect was being pursued by the Chelsea Police Department prior to the collision.

The two vehicles collided when the driver, who was fleeing from the police moments before, ran a red light and struck a vehicle driven by a 65-year-old Revere man.

Following the crash, which occurred at the intersection of Revere Parkway and Route 145, both drivers were ejected from their cars. One of the men was pronounced dead at the scene while the other was pronounced dead at Whidden Memorial Hospital in Everett.

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August 25, 2010

14 -wheel Trash Truck Collides with Honda Civic in Beverly, Killing the Driver

An 81-year-old Beverly Farms woman operating a Honda Civic collided with a 14-wheel trash truck around noon yesterday afternoon. The operator of the Honda crossed the center line on Hart Street in Beverly and was struck by the truck as a result.

The local authorities have stated the victim of the crash lost consciousness following the accident and was taken by ambulance to Beverly hospital following the administration of CPR by firefighters at the scene of the crash.

According to the Beverly Police Department, the operator of the Honda was conscious and talking to rescue workers immediately after the crash, but lost consciousness moments after the firefighters arrived. The rescue workers utilized a portable defibrillator to try and revive the woman. Beverly Hospital reported that the 81-year-old woman passed away yesterday afternoon as a result of the injuries which she sustained in the crash.

The trash truck was being operated by a 47-year-old Rockport man when the accident occurred. The driver of the trash truck sustained a minor wrist injury in the collision. The truck belongs to a Peabody hauling and recycling company.

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August 24, 2010

Several Injured and One Killed Following a Four Vehicle Car Crash in Lexington

This past week, a four vehicle car accident occurred on Route 2 in Lexington. The accident occurred around 2:30 p.m., when a vehicle headed eastbound crossed over the median into oncoming westbound traffic.

The vehicle then collided head –on with three automobiles driving in the westbound lanes on Route 2. The accident occurred at a high rate of speed. The driver of the vehicle which crossed the median and struck the other cars was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to state police, another individual involved in the accident was in “very bad shape” and was transported to the hospital for treatment of the injuries sustained in the collision. Reportedly, all but one of the people involved in the four-car accident were transported to the hospital. The one individual that was not taken to the hospital was able to walk and was treated at the scene.

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August 13, 2010

Franklin Pedestrian Killed by SUV on 495 in Westford

The MA personal injury attorneys at Altman & Altman have been made aware of a fatal accident this morning on route 495 in Westford. An unidentified woman was walking along the highway when she was struck and killed by a 2009 Toyota RAV SUV. The vehicle was operated by a Lowell resident whose name has not been released by the local authorities.

The pedestrian accident caused all three northbound lanes of Route 495 to be shut down for over two hours. A preliminary investigation has shown that the pedestrian was possibly struck by multiple vehicles, including the Toyota SUV.

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in an automobile accident, please contact the attorneys at the law firm of Altman & Altman for an initial consultation free of charge. Our firm has successfully handled thousands of car accident cases and our lawyers are available to answer all of your questions and help to put your mind to rest.

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August 3, 2010

Tow Truck Rear Ends Car in Lynn Leaving two Injured and one Dead

A 23-year old passenger was killed in Lynn when a flat bed tow truck struck the Honda Civic he was riding in from behind. The two remaining occupants of the Honda Civic who were riding in the front seat were taken to Salem Hospital for treatment of their injuries.

The accident occurred at 4:32 pm on the southbound side of the Lynnway at the Harding Street red-light. The occupants of the Civic were stopped at a red-light when the impact occurred.

Following the collision, both the tow truck, which was owned and operated by a Revere towing company, and the Honda Civic caught fire. The operator of the flat bed tow truck was not injured and has not been charged by the local police. Authorities are currently investigating the incident.

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Please contact the experienced attorneys at the law firm of Altman & Altman for an initial consultation free of charge.

Source: Tow truck rear-ends car, killing passenger, The Boston Globe, July 31, 2010

April 28, 2010

Police Report Two Fatal Highway Crashes in Massachusetts

On Saturday afternoon, two men died in separate Massachusetts highway crashes. Both traffic accidents occurred between 3 and 4pm.

In the first crash, a car headed east on Interstate 195 hit a guard rail and flipped over. EMTs pronounced the driver dead at the scene of the car crash. He was the only person in the vehicle.

A second highway accident involved a man on a motorcycle, who was traveling south on Route 146. He was thrown from his motorcycle after hitting the median. The motorcycle accident victim was transported to UMass Memorial Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.

Both fatal accidents are being investigated. Authorities have not released the victims' names pending notification of relatives.

Source: Two killed in highway accidents, Boston Globe, April 24, 2010

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April 21, 2010

Peabody Car Crash Kills Massachusetts Man

On Sunday morning, a single-car accident on Route 1 in Peabody killed an Amesbury man. The 21-year-old passenger was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from a 2005 Saturn Ion when the driver, a 22-year-old from Sanford, Maine, lost control of the vehicle. The Saturn rolled over several times before ending up in the median.

The driver was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital with serious injuries, but his passenger was declared dead at the scene of the accident. According to police, the ramp from Route 1 north was closed for about two and a half hours while authorities investigated the car accident.

Troop A of the Massachusetts State Police , the State Police Collision Analysis Reconstruction Section, the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, and the Medical Examiners Office continue to investigate the fatal auto accident.

Source: Amesbury man dead in Route1 ramp crash, ItemLive.com, April 19, 2010

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March 11, 2010

Milford Woman Dies in Car Crash, District Attorney Considers Filing Charges

Earlier this week, a 92-year-old woman from Milford, Massachusetts was injured in a car accident and later succumbed to those injuries. After being flown by medical helicopter to the hospital, she died late Monday at UMass Memorial Medical Center.

The woman's 82-year-old sister was found to be at fault for the four-car accident, and police say they are considering holding her criminally responsible for the death. Ultimately, that determination will be made by the district attorney, they say.

The younger sister was driving a 1998 Dodge Stratus that set off the chain-reaction crash. She was not seriously injured and has already been cited for following too closely.

Source: 92-year-old passenger in Milford crash dies from injuries, Milford Daily News, March 10, 2010

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December 18, 2009

After Year Long Investigation, No Charges Filed in Fire Truck Crash

Almost a year after a fire truck crash killed a Massachusetts firefighter returning from a routine medical call, the Suffolk County district attorney has released a lengthy report showing that no one was criminally responsible for the truck accident.

The DA had considered possible charges of manslaughter and motor vehicle homicide for negligent operation but concluded that many factors contributed to the truck accident. The investigation includes 400 pages of reports on safety inspections and 30 interviews.

The truck crash occurred when a 22-ton fire truck crashed into a concrete wall near Parker Hill due to a brake failure. The firefighter sounded the horn of the truck as it descended down the hill to warn other vehicles and pedestrians.

A report from the Boston Fire Department showed that the department had not adequately maintained its fire trucks.

Source: No criminal charges in fatal Boston fire truck crash, NECN.com, December 11, 2009

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December 16, 2009

Driver Killed in Lowell Car Crash Was Texting

A recent Massachusetts car accident underscores the dangers of text messaging while driving. The driver, a 22-year-old man from Tewksbury, was traveling at least 50 miles per hour over the weekend when his car went off the road and collided with a tree. The fatal car crash occurred around 11:10am on Sunday morning.

Police discovered the driver's cell phone with the keyboard exposed on the passenger-side floor of the car. Phone records proved that the driver had been sending and receiving text messages shortly before the auto accident. He was taken to Saints Medical Center in Lowell, where he was pronounced dead. In addition to texting, the driver was not wearing his seat belt.

So far, efforts to make text messaging a primary offense in Massachusetts have failed, but perhaps this will serve as a reminder of the seriousness of driver distraction.

Source: Lowell: Tewksbury man killed in Lowell crash was texting, TMCNet.com, December 15, 2009

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June 5, 2009

Clarksburg Crashes Kills One, Injures Another

In Clarksburg, Massachusetts, two motor vehicle accidents occurred on Sunday afternoon. An elderly Clarksburg man was killed a Ford Focus crashed into a Ford pick-up truck. Massachusetts state police said the car crash occurred at the intersection of Route 8 and Henderson Road just after 5:30pm. Clarence Demers, 87, died. The other drive, Peter Eoisvert, 44, was not injured, according to police.

The cause of that truck accident is being investigated.

Earlier in the afternoon, a woman was injured when her Toyota Tercel hit a Ford F-250 pick-up truck on Curran Highway (Route 8) in Adams. She was taken to North Adams Regional Hospital for medical care. Police did not reveal the identities of either person involved in that auto accident, which occurred around 3:45pm. The impact of the crash was so strong that it knocked the spare tire out from underneath the truck.

Clarksburg: 1 dead in crash, Berkshire Eagle, June 1

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April 30, 2009

Remembering Massachusetts Workers Who Died on the Job

A report on worker safety that was released by the Massachusetts AFL-CIO and the Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Heath found that 66 Massachusetts workers died on the job or from work-related injuries last year. A ceremony yesterday on the steps of Boston's statehouse memorialized these workers.

One of workers mentioned in the report, which is called "Dying for Work in Massachusetts: The Loss of Life and Limb in Massachusetts Workplaces," is David Gonzalez, a 24-year-old paper manufacturing employee. Gonzalez died when his clothing got caught in a piece of machinery and the machinery pulled him in and crushed him.

Inspectors from OSHA found 12 serious safety violations at the paper manufacturing plant after the machinery accident. The company appealed the proposed fines of $29,500 and OSHA settled on nine violations and a fine of $16,125.

According to the executive director of MassCOSH, "the report demonstrates that the cost of cutting corners on safety is paid in human lives."

Safety issues cited in worker deaths, Worcester Telegram, April 29, 2009

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April 7, 2009

Authorities Investigating Adams Snowmobile Accident

In Northwestern Massachusetts, a snowmobile accident in Adams killed one man and seriously injured another. The crash was reported at 12:19 Saturday morning and claimed the life of Michael J. Bresett, 42. Ryan Ziemalak was injured, but the 22-year-old’s condition was upgraded from serious to stable over the weekend.

State law requires snowmobile riders to wear an approved helmet. According to the Massachusetts Environmental Police, neither man was wearing head protection at the time of the snowmobile accident, which was Berkshire County’s second fatal snowmobile crash this year. The law also prohibits riders from “traveling on a public way,” which the pair were doing at the time of the crash.

Police do not know which man was driving the snowmobile, and the accident is under investigation.

Snowmobile victim failed to wear helmet, Berkshire Eagle, April 6, 2009

1 dead, 1 injured in Mass. snowmobile crash, Boston Herald, April 5, 2009

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February 12, 2009

Survey Finds That Massachusetts Car Accident Deaths on the Decline

According to a survey of state highway safety agencies, deaths caused by motor vehicle accidents declined in 40 states, including Massachusetts, last year. Some are predicting that traffic deaths in the United States could decrease to their lowest levels in forty years.

Of the 44 states surveyed, the average decline was 10.7 percent. The executive director of the Governors Safety Association said that higher use of seat belts and an increased enforcement of traffic laws may have played a role in decreasing traffic fatalities. In addition, many states are noticing drivers reducing speed to increase fuel efficiency.

Massachusetts, the District of Columbia, and four other states reported over a twenty percent decline in auto fatalities during 2008. Two New England states noted an increase in fatalities and several large states were not included in the survey.

Survey reveals that auto accident deaths drop in 40 states in 2008, MedicineHatNews.com, February 4, 2009

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November 12, 2008

Police Investigating Mansfield Train Accident

Last Friday in Mansfield, Massachusetts, a female pedestrian was hit and killed by a high-speed Amtrak Acela train. Police have not publicly identified the train accident victim by name, but she was reportedly a 55-year-old Mansfield woman.

The train was traveling from Boston to New York City to Washington, DC when the accident occurred at around 3:40pm, shutting the track down for close to 40 minutes. After that, trains were permitted to use the track at reduced speeds, but the train accident did cause delays during the Friday afternoon commute.

The train accident occurred on Track 1, where riders wait to board the trains. However, it is illegal to be on the tracks and several warning signs are posted. The nature of the accident was unknown as of Saturday; however the Massachusetts Transit Police is leading an investigation of the accident.

Police seek clues in train fatality, The Sun Chronicle, November 9, 2008

Person killed by train in Mansfield, Boston Herald, November 8, 2008

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October 7, 2008

Massachusetts Woman Dies in Car Accident

In Fall River, Massachusetts, a car crash on Route 24 killed an elderly woman driving a 1997 Pontiac Sunfire.

Evelyn Rebello, 85, of Fall River, reportedly lost control of her car and struck the guardrail, veering right across several lanes of traffic and stopping in the breakdown lane.

Emergency crews transported the car crash victim to Rhode Island Hospital. She suffered serious injuries and died the day after the auto accident.

The Massachusetts State Police are investigating the fatal crash.

Woman dies in Fall River car crash, EyeWitnessNewsTV.com, September 30, 2008

State Police investigate fatal crash on Route 24 in Fall River, SouthCoastToday.com, September 30, 2008

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September 30, 2008

Man Hit by Everett Police Car Dies

A bicyclist who was hit by a police car in Everett, Massachusetts last week has been taken off life support. An officer whose name has not been released was responding to a 911 call when he hit Reda Rouf, 19, of Everett, near the intersection of Ferry and Glendale streets.

Those who witnessed the accident said Rouf was riding at high speed into the intersection before the police cruiser hit him. The driver immediately helped the victim after he was hit. Rouf remains in critical condition at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Everett police told WBZ-TV that the 911 call was for an unrelated accident. The officer involved in the accident has been placed on paid administrative leave while the accident is under investigation.

Cyclist Hit By Police Car Taken Off Life Support, WBZTV.com, September 18, 2008

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September 25, 2008

Barnstable Man Pleads Guilty in Deadly Car Crash

In Barnstable, Massachusetts, a 24-year old has pleaded guilty to manslaughter by motor vehicle. Michael Catarius has admitted he was drunk when he caused a car accident that killed two men. Prior to the crash, Catarius had left a party in Sandwich, Massachusetts.

The car accident victims were Michael Warren, 26, a passenger, and Edward Kipp, 48, who was driving a pick-up truck. Prosecutors claimed Catarius barreled through a locked gate after guards stopped him at the Massachusetts Military Reservation in July 2007. He then ran a red light, hit a car, and became airborne, hitting Kipp’s pickup truck.

Last Friday at Barntable Superior Court, Catarius was sentenced to seven to ten years in prison.

Cape man pleads guilty in crash that killed 2, Boston Herald, September 20, 2008

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September 15, 2008

Driver Dies in Attleboro Car Accident

In Attleboro, Massachusetts, a 24-year old driver of a sport utility vehicle died after colliding with a Jeep on Thatcher Street last Wednesday night.

Randy Cummings was driving east on Thatcher Street around 11:45 pm when he rear-ended the Jeep, which was driven by Sean M. Caponigro, 31, of Attleboro. Cummings’ car continued several hundred feet before hitting a cement wall. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the car accident.

Police suspect that Cummings may have been speeding and may have been driving under the influence of alcohol, but they will not know more until they receive the results of the toxicology tests and work with state police reconstruction experts to determine how fast he was driving.

The motor vehicle accident is under investigation by Massachusetts state police detectives and the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office.

Police: Speed caused crash, The Sun-Chronicle, September 12, 2008

Somersworth man dies in Mass. car crash, Fosters.com, September 12, 2008

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September 12, 2008

North Weymouth Man Dies in Car Crash

A driver from North Weymouth, Massachusetts was killed in a car crash on Route 1 last month. Jason Gambon’s black Nissan sedan swerved to the left, crossed the center line, and hit an 18-wheel tractor trailer head-on around 7:10pm on Tuesday, August 26. According to reports, the driver of the tractor-trailer did not sustain any serious injuries.

Emergency crews had to use hydraulic rescue tools to extricate the injured driver from his car. The road was closed for several hours and Gambon, 24, was taken by ambulance to Portsmouth Regional Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The reason that Gambon swerved and hit the tractor-trailer is still under investigation. An unnamed witness said that the two vehicles were very badly damaged. The witness said, “nobody’s going to walk away from that.”

Massachusetts man killed in North Hampton crash, Seacoastonline.com, August 29, 2008

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September 10, 2008

Wayland Women Dies After Being Hit by Car

The town of Wayland, Massachusetts was hit by tragedy last week. Marie Martino, 80, of Wayland was hit by a car on Thursday night while trying to cross a street in Wayland.

A Wayland ambulance took the car accident victim to MetroWest Medical Center in Natick, where she was pronounced dead around 9pm.

The driver of the gray Ford van that hit Martino has been identified as Lawrence Vannerderynen of Natick, Massachusetts. As of late last week, no charges have been filed.

Meanwhile, in Hudson, Massachusetts, Jayne E. Lombardo, 44, was hit by a car around the same time. She was taken to St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester, but as of last week, her condition was still unknown.

Woman identified in Wayland fatal crash, WickedLocal.com, September 5, 2008

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September 8, 2008

Brockton Doctors Face Lawsuit After Patient Kills 2, Injures 1

Last year, a Massachusetts woman crashed her car into Brockton Hospital, killing a doctor and a secretary and seriously injuring a radiation therapist at the hospital. A wrongful death lawsuit against the driver, 77-year-old Jane Bergland, of Rockland, has already been dropped after a settlement was reached out of court.

Now several of Bergland’s doctors face potential lawsuits for failing to warn their patient, who was taking insulin for diabetes, among other medications, that her medication might impair her ability to drive. She was also taking powerful painkillers and undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

Less than a year ago, the Supreme Judicial Court ruled in a similar case that a Brockton doctor could be sued for failing to warn a patient about the potential side effects of prescriptions. That case is scheduled to go to trial in November. The newer case against Bergland’s doctors is still going through the legal process.

Driver’s doctors sued over fatal Brockton Hospital crash, WickedLocal.com, September 6, 2008

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September 5, 2008

Car Crash Kills Massachusetts Couple

According to Leicester, Massachusetts police, an elderly couple died last week as the result of a head-on car crash on Route 9. Russel Mosman, 83, and his wife, Dorothy, 89, of North Brookfield, Massachusetts were struck by an eastbound car driven by Adwoa Gyamfi of Worcester, Massachusetts.

After the crash at the intersection of Route 9 and Town Beach Road, emergency medical personnel transported Russell Mosman to UMass Memorial Medical Center, where he died from his injuries.

Dorothy Mosman was pronounced dead at the hospital soon after the car accident. Gyamfi was also transported to the hospital, but local police report that her injuries are not considered serious.

The motor vehicle accident is under investigation, butso far no one has been charged.

Elderly couple die in car crash, Boston Herald, August 29, 2008

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