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Dozing driver causes wreck, wrongful death of child

The dangers of driving while intoxicated or using a cell phone behind the wheel are generally well-known, but these are not the only actions that put motorists at risk. A sleepy driver apparently caused a devastating car accident that resulted in at least one wrongful death. The victim was only 8 years old.

According to the California Highway Patrol, the wreck was caused when a driver drifted off to sleep behind the wheel. His westbound vehicle then drifted across the center line of traffic and into the eastbound lane. The driver of an eastbound vehicle attempted to avoid the oncoming, wrong-way car, but was unable to do so. The two collided head on.

Two young children were traveling with their father in the eastbound vehicle. The youngest -- a 6-year-old boy -- was taken by air to the hospital while his older brother was taken to a different hospital. Unfortunately, the older brother died at the hospital, and the younger is still hospitalized with serious injuries. Their father suffered only minor injuries in the accident.

For California parents, there may be no greater tragedy than the loss of a child. Aside from the emotional trauma of a young child's death, parents who have lost children in car accidents are often burdened with the financial damages associated with attempted life-saving medical care and unexpected funeral expenses. While personal injury claims can address ongoing damages as well as long-lasting pain and suffering, compensation from wrongful death suits typically helps grieving families deal with the aftermaths of fatal car accidents.

Source: kionrightnow.com, "UPDATE: CHP says sleepy driver caused deadly crash", Barry Brown and Amanda Gomez, April 13, 2016

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