Three people lost their lives and multiple people sustained critical injuries when a pickup truck and a car collided head-on near the intersection of Boulevard and East Calhoun Street in Anderson, South Carolina (SC), during the early morning hours of November 9, 2014. The deceased victims included a teenager who was a passenger in the car and two other people in the smaller vehicle. Two more children in the car suffered major injuries, and a passenger in the pickup was reported to have a traumatic brain injury.
Police later charged the driver of the pickup, identified as a baseball coach at Anderson University, with causing the fatal accident by crossing the center line and with driving while under the influence of alcohol. The at-fault driver also faces multiple felony charges for causing deaths and injuries while driving drunk.
As often as my Carolina wrongful death attorney colleagues and I take up the cases of people who lost loved ones to reckless and irresponsible intoxicated drivers, we never fail to be angered and saddened. Preventing such tragedies really is as easy as not getting behind the wheel after having one drink (or several) too many.
Unfortunately, thousands of drinkers each day fail to make the wise and safe choice to set down the keys. As a factsheet from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes -- without the outrage the statistics merit -- "Every day, almost 30 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver. This amounts to one death every 51 minutes."
Only people who drink can reduce that ghastly toll to zero. Until that happens, individuals who cause DUI/DWI wrecks must be held accountable through criminal prosecutions and civil court proceedings.