Crystal Crawford-McClure, 28, was critically injured and lost her unborn child in a rear-end collision after the vehicle in which she was a passenger was struck by a Florida Highway Patrol trooper's car.
According to a news report in The News-Press, the rear-end accident occurred the night of February 15, 2013 on the southbound Interstate 75 near mile marker 134. Officials say Crawford-McClure was a passenger in a Jeep traveling south on the I-75. The officer's vehicle struck the Jeep's rear bumper, causing the Jeep to veer onto the grass shoulder and overturn.
The driver, Christopher McClure, suffered minor injuries. But Crawford-McClure was ejected and suffered critical injuries. Her unborn child was killed as well. A 1-year-old child also escaped with minor injuries. It is not clear if Crawford-McClure was wearing a seatbelt at the time. The News-Press reports that the trooper was not responding to a call when the crash occurred and that the lights and sirens on the patrol vehicle were not on.
What Caused the Rear-End Crash?
Rear-end crashes often result in major injury if not fatal accidents nationwide. In any rear-end accident, a number of questions must be asked. The report states that the officer was not responding to an emergency at the time. Was the driver of the striking vehicle inebriated or fatigued at the time? Was the driver distracted in some way?
In this case, was the officer talking to someone on the radio, checking his computer screen or using a cell phone? Did excessive speed play a part in this tragic crash? I trust investigators are looking into these and other issues in order to determine precisely what occurred here and why.
Fault and Liability
If the FHP officer is determined to have been at fault, both he and his employer can be held liable for the injuries and damages caused. Injured victims in such cases can seek compensation to cover medical expenses, lost wages, cost of hospitalization, rehabilitation and other related damages.
Injured victims or families of deceased victims would also be well advised to contact an experienced car accident attorney who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that the negligent parties are held liable. In cases involving government employees or public agencies, it is important to remember that the statute of limitations may require victims to file claims much sooner.