21
Aug 2013
By

Medical Problem Blamed for Four-Vehicle Accident in Massachusetts

According to Boston.com, a Massachusetts man recently caused a four-car accident after he crossed the center line while driving in Milton. The driver claims that his actions behind the wheel were caused by a medical issue. 

Our Fall River injury lawyers know that drivers are expected to behave in a reasonably competent and safe manner behind the wheel. While some medical issues arise unexpectedly and cannot be helped, in other cases, drivers should be aware of the fact that they may have medical problems that could cause them to drive in an unsafe way.

Man Claims Medical Problem the Cause of Accident

This multi-vehicle collision allegedly occurred as a result of a 58-year-old Massachusetts driver who was traveling home form work when he crossed the center line into oncoming traffic.

The driver claims that he crossed the line because he had a medical episode that was brought on by dehydration, fatigue and the extreme heat. He said that he was traveling home from his job when he began to feel lightheaded and started sweating. According to his reports, the next thing he knew was that he was outside of his vehicle and his vehicle was stopped across the road.

The driver claims that he did not know what happened until witnesses informed him that he had crossed over the center line in his car. Although he doesn’t remember the incident, he said he has “no reason to dispute” the account given by witnesses.

The 58-year-old driver was injured, along with four other people. The driver who crossed the center line was in the hospital for the longest period of time. He was cited by the police after the accident.

The police indicate that there has not yet been a decision made on whether the man will face any additional criminal liability for the accident. The police refrained from commenting on the accident because the driver should first have the chance to be heard on the citation in court.

The driver reportedly said that he hopes this is a “speedy process,” and that he intends to make his medical records available. He believes that his medical records will show he suffered a medical episode causing him to loose consciousness and cross the center line.

Of course, even if this is true, this is not necessarily an excuse for his behavior and it will not necessarily help him to avoid either criminal or civil liability. Driver fatigue is a top cause of accidents when drivers fall asleep behind the wheel, and it is not a defense to charges that a driver has caused an accident since reasonable drivers don’t continue to operate a vehicle when they are dangerously exhausted.

Additionally, drivers who know they suffer from a medical condition that is exacerbated by heat or dehydration and who choose to drive anyway may be considered to have been dangerously reckless or negligent when they made the choice to get behind the wheel despite their condition. This would mean that even if a medical problem was the immediate cause of the accident, the ultimate cause was the fact that the driver made the dangerous choice to drive.

If you have been injured in an accident, contact an experienced lawyer at 508-677-4900. The Law Offices of Deborah G. Kohl serves clients in Providence, R.I., Foxborough, and Fall River, Mass.

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