A common debate that occurs in relation to car accident liability is the extent of fault placed on a driver for injuries sustained by passengers. While most in Texas likely agree that an adult driver holds the brunt of the responsibility when it comes to ensuring the safety of minor passengers, many might also say that adult passengers understand the risks they assume when agreeing to travel in another’s vehicle.
While that certainly may hold true when it comes to wearing one’s seat belt, what about those scenarios where a driver acts recklessly? Could authorities view adult passengers as complicit in their actions (and this equally sharing in liability for an accident)?
Snook collision results in fatalities
Such is the question that could come up following a fatal accident that recently occurred in Snook. According to the local ABC News affiliate, two people died (and two others sustained serious injuries) when the driver of a BMW fled from authorities following a traffic stop and led them on a subsequent chase. The chase ended when the driver lost control of the vehicle and struck a tree. The driver was among those who sustained injuries in the accident. Authorities did not report the reason as to why they initially pulled the vehicle over, other than to say that the stop led to a criminal investigation.
Liability for dangerous (and potentially criminal) actions
Some might assume the passengers in the vehicle in this story were themselves participants in the allegedly illegal activity that led to their encounter with law enforcement. Yet ultimately, the responsibility for what happens to a vehicle rests with the driver. When what happens is the reasonable result of reckless actions, then accident victims (including passengers) may opt to seek compensation through a lawsuit.