Alcohol believed to be factor in head-on crash near Hickory

Head-on collisions are always difficult to explain. Why does one vehicle, apparently under control of its driver, suddenly switch lands and hit a vehicle in the oncoming lane? A recent collision near Hickory raises a number of questions, to which police have only a few answers.

The crash

According to police investigators, a 1999 Mercedes Benz E300 was heading north on NC 127 when it inexplicably crossed the center line and collided with a south-bound Hyundai. The driver of the Mercedes was pronounced dead at the scene, while the driver of the Hyundai suffered only minor injuries.

Police said that they believe alcohol impairment was involved in the crash, but no further details were released. The driver of the Mercedes was believed to have been driving with no seat belt.

Who is at fault?

The police did not offer any explanation for the accident or any assessment of fault. Police may wish to engage in an extensive reconstruction investigation before releasing a final report.

Nevertheless, several tentative conclusions can be inferred. The driver of the Mercedes was most likely the driver who was intoxicated because this was the vehicle that was traveling in the wrong lane when the collision occurred. Also, the fact that the driver of the Mercedes was not wearing his seat belt may be a sign of driver impairment. Police will draw additional inferences based upon the post-collision location of the vehicles and the amount of damage suffered by each vehicle. The police investigators may also draw important inferences from skid marks on the highway and whether either vehicle showed signs that the driver attempted to avoid the collision.

What next?

Given the greater likelihood that the driver of the Mercedes was at fault, the driver of the Hyundai may wish to bring a claim for injuries, lost income and medical expenses. Anyone who has suffered an injury or lost a loved one under similar circumstances may wish to consult an experienced motor vehicle accident attorney for an analysis of the evidence, potential legal strategies and an opinion on the likelihood of recovering damages.

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