Recently, a criminal trial was held in connection with a pedestrian accident which had occurred in downtown Columbus. The driver on trial was 63-years-old, according to ABC 6. He reportedly drove his vehicle for two miles with a shredded tire, with witnesses indicating there were sparks coming from his flat tire. Witnesses also said he had sped through red lights and engaged in other unsafe behavior while operating his vehicle.
The ride came to an end when he hit a school bus at the intersection of High Street and Broad Street. He pushed the school bus into a street corner, causing the bus to run over a 58-year-old Columbus Engineer and an Ohio state student. The engineer died several days after the collision from his injuries. The student, who was interning with the city, died at the scene of the accident. The driver faced criminal charges.
Dangerous Drivers Face Serious Consequences in Fatal Pedestrian Accidents
The driver was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide as well as vehicular assault for the two deaths, and for injuries to the bus driver and to the passenger in his vehicle. He was found guilty on both counts, which means he faces more than a decade of imprisonment as a potential sentence.
He had testified on his own behalf at his criminal trial, saying he did not remember how his tire became flat or how the accident happened. He claimed his ex-girlfriend had been hitting him in the head with a can of soda at the time of the accident, and said he shouldn't be faulted because he had gone into panic mode due to his ex-girlfriend's assault. Despite this defense, he was convicted anyway.
Drivers have an obligation to follow the rules of the road, which means obeying the speed limit, stopping for red lights, and taking reasonable precautions to avoid hitting pedestrians or other vehicles. If a driver fails to do this, it can result in criminal charges, as in this case.
In addition to criminal charges, it is also possible for a civil action to result from a pedestrian accident caused by a dangerous driver. A civil lawsuit or tort lawsuit allows injured victims to recover compensation from those who hurt them, or allows family members to recover compensation when their loved one is killed. Ohio is a fault state, so a civil lawsuit can be filed after any car accident injuries, regardless of their severity.
As long as victims or family members of victims can prove the other driver was responsible for causing a collision to occur, the victims should be compensated for the harm which they have endured. Drivers should be held both civilly and criminally liable because their actions have very real consequences.