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Car accident: 1 dead in Barrie

A horrific accident claimed the life of a woman in Barrie, and a 22-year-old man is up on charges after the crash, which happened back in Nov. 2015. Ontario authorities that handle the investigation of car accidents believe the man may have been impaired at the time of the accident. He was set to appear in court on June 19 for a trial that was expected to last seven days. 

The accident report says the man was driving his pickup truck with three passengers on Warminister Sideroad near Orillia when the accident occurred. The man reportedly lost control of his vehicle around 3 a.m. while trying to navigate a sharp turn, causing the truck to veer off the road and into a ditch. The truck continued for some 28 meters before smashing into a tree. 

None of the four individuals in the vehicle were wearing seat belts at the time of the accident. The driver managed to get his vehicle back on the road, but quickly discovered one of his passengers had been actually been decapitated. He now stands charged with impaired driving causing death among a host of other charges. 

In the case of fatal car accidents caused by impaired driving, the criminal penalty for an accused driver can be severe under Ontario law. Even if a defendant is able to avoid a criminal conviction, the family of a deceased passenger would be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver in civil court. Of course, a criminal conviction is typically enough to formally establish negligence in a related civil court claim, after which specific demands for documented monetary damages would be decided.

Source: The Toronto Sun, "Passenger decapitated in crash: Court", Tracy McLaughlin, June 19, 2017

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