Within a two week period during the month of July, Ontario saw two fatal crashes caused by impaired drivers. Each of the accidents resulted in the death of children, both cases ending in the arrest of drivers who were charged with impaired driving. The timing and severity of the crashes have drawn a response from the Canadian Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) group.
The first accident, which occurred north of Strathroy, resulted in the death of an 8-year-old girl from London, along with three other injured people. The other three passengers of the vehicle were treated for minor injuries. The other driver, age 33, was charged with driving while impaired and operation of a motor vehicle causing death, according to the Middlesex County OPP.
The second accident, occurring in a rural Chatham-Kent area was a single-vehicle crash that killed a seven-year-old girl. Her two young siblings, ages four and 11 were rushed to the hospital and are in stable condition. The driver was charged with impaired driving causing death, impaired driving causing bodily harm, criminal negligence causing bodily harm, and two counts of driving while under suspension. The driver is said to have been the boyfriend of the children’s mother. In both crashes, the impaired state of the drivers has yet to be proven in court.
“These types of accidents are always horrific, but especially when they result in the loss of young lives,” says Attorney Steve Rastin of Rastin Law Trial Lawyers. “If you or your family are the victims of a crash like this, you may absolutely be entitled to damages and should pursue them. These types of crashes can result in death, serious injury that comes with substantial medical costs and treatment, and also emotional damage. You deserve to be compensated for these hardships. Contact a car accident attorney to discuss your case so you can be awarded the damages that you deserve.”
Andrew Murie, the Chief Executive of MAAD Canada, expressed how shocking these two crashes are considering the age of the victims. More often than not, victims of impaired driving crashes are of older age groups. Therefore, these two accidents in such close time proximity to one another are particularly jarring for the public. The age group most represented by such accidents are the 16-24-year-old age range. According to Murie, people of these ages are more willing to take risks, like driving while under the influence.
In cases involving a driver under the influence, the crash most often involves the impaired driver crashing into another sober driver. Cases like the ones mentioned above with a single-vehicle crash involving the death of a passenger are less likely, described by Murie to be considered “rare.”
The MAAD Canada group has been pursuing harsher laws in Ontario regarding such crashes. They are calling for stronger penalties to be handed down to drivers who cause crashes due to driving while impaired. It is the hope that such laws may prevent these accidents, which resulted in the tragic deaths of two young children.