Due to the imposing size and weight of most trucks, when people hear about a truck accident it may be easy to assume that the truck driver is less likely to suffer and injury. However, truck drivers are just as vulnerable as everyone else when a drunk driver is on the road. An accident is made even more tragic when the tow truck driver is on the road trying to help a stranded driver and is caught in the path of an intoxicated motorist.

Recently in Virginia, a deadly drunk driving accident happened on I-295 that resulted in one man’s death and landed a driver inside a jail cell. On May 1, a tow truck stopped to assist a stranded driver on the shoulder of I-295. While standing on the traffic side of the stopped vehicle, the 22-year-old truck driver was hit by an SUV and killed. Apparently the Ford Explorer ran off the side of the road, into the tow truck and its driver, then flipped-over into a nearby ditch.

The dramatic and deadly scene did not end there. After the SUV rolled over, its driver fled the scene and was spotted later in a residential area, where he was promptly arrested. Police charged the 31-year-old with DUI, felony hit-and-run, involuntary manslaughter and refusal to submit to a blood alcohol test. In addition, the driver was charged with obstruction of justice.

One of the most horrendous elements of a drunk driving case is the fact that these types of accidents are always avoidable. When a person is victim of a drunk driver in Virginia, compensation for damages can be pursued for costs such as medical expenses, lost wages and funeral expenses. Punitive damages can also be pursued. These types of damages can be awarded when an accident was caused by particularly egregious behavior in order to serve as a deterrent to similar behavior.

Source: WRIC, “Mechanicsville man charged in fatal hit-and-run crash,” May 1, 2014