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Teen's death highlights dangers of auto-pedestrian accidents

A young teenager is dead after a devastating accident involving an elderly driver and what was likely careless driving. Colorado police do not believe that the driver's age alone caused the wreck. Instead, officers claim that the woman was above the legal blood-alcohol limit. Auto-pedestrian accidents tend to leave both victims and the community feeling raw and exposed.

A 14-year-old boy was standing in a bike lane with two friends in July 2016 when the wreck occurred. Witnesses apparently spotted the 81-year-old driver weaving through traffic after crashing her vehicle into two of the young teens, killing one and injuring another. The driver was also injured and hospitalized, where she was pronounced dead just over a week later. A blood test determined that her BAC at the time of the wreck was .135.

In addition to being intoxicated at the time of the wreck, the woman had apparently been struggling to drive for some time beforehand. She was involved in another crash in Oct. 2015 in which she carelessly crashed her vehicle into another car before leaving the scene. The motorist who was hit declined to press any charges because of the elderly woman's age. At that time, her family also told police that they were taking steps to prevent her from continuing to drive.

Regardless of a driver's age, auto\-pedestrian accidents often have profound impacts on the victims. Being struck by a car can cause more than just serious injuries -- it can also lead to death. Colorado victims and their families are often unfairly burdened by medical costs, physical pain and other damages related to these injuries, most of which cannot be addressed through criminal charges. Personal injury or wrongful death claims filed against a negligent driver or their estate is usually more effective at rendering justice for affected individuals and their families.

Source: 9news.com, "Elderly driver was legally drunk in fatal crash", Kevin Vaughan, Aug. 19, 2016

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