A man from Richmond, Indiana died after the stolen car he drove collided with a Greyhound bus on Interstate 70. Nineteen people on the bus were injured.
The situation began on early Sunday, when Wayne County emergency personnel received calls about an accident in the eastbound lane of Interstate 70. Wayne County sheriff's deputies later determined that the deceased car driver had been driving a 1990 Ford Mustang stolen from Love's Truck Stop in Richmond. Before the crash, the driver was navigating the Mustang the wrong way, driving westbound in an eastbound lane. Since the divider along that portion of the interstate has a cable barrier, it is unclear why or for how long the Mustang had been driving the wrong way, or whether the driver had been aware of it.
The Mustang met head on with a Greyhound bus bound for New York. Of the 23 passengers on the bus, 19 were injured, although fortunately none of the injuries appeared to be very serious. One passenger was taken by helicopter to an Indianapolis hospital, while two were admitted to Reid Hospital in good condition. Twelve of the passengers were treated at Reid and released, and Reid Hospital staff were optimistic that all would be treated and released in time. The staff further noted that it was fortunate the injured passengers happened to come during a shift change in the emergency room, so staff from both shifts were available to assist them.
After colliding with the Mustang, the Greyhound bus came to a stop on the grassy shoulder of the Interstate 70 eastbound lane. A tow truck finally came to move it out of the way. The Mustang was not so fortunate. Witnesses described it as being so flattened that they could not tell if it was once a car or a truck.
While rare, wrong way driving collisions occur far too often and frequently have devastating consequences. Often the cause can be traced to one driver being under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In 2012, the number of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities was 228, with 22 of them applying to those under the age of 21. Of those who were impaired, more than 75 percent had blood alcohol levels over 0.15, and the percentage of repeat offenders with blood alcohol levels over 0.15 was 63 percent. Every person driving has a duty to everyone else on the road to use reasonable caution while driving. Drinking alcohol or using drugs before driving is a serious breach of this duty. Anyone injured in a car accident as a result of this breach has the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver responsible. The best way to avoid this scenario is, of course, to ensure that you are sober whenever you get behind the wheel.
Miller & Falkner is an Indiana and Kentucky plaintiffs law firm. Located in Louisville, Kentucky, the firm provides representation in the areas of personal injury and employment law. If you need a Kentucky or Indiana personal injury attorney, contact us today for a free consultation.