Godwin, Morris, Laurenzi & Bloomfield, P.C.

2 dead, others suffer personal injury, when SUV hits motorcycles

Another tragic loss of human life occurred in Tennessee on Friday, May 22, when an SUV driven by a 31-year-old Walland woman crossed into oncoming traffic and caused an accident that killed two people on a motorcycle. The SUV hit a total of four oncoming motorcycles, injuring several other riders, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol. It appears that the families of the decedents have personal injury claims for wrongful death damages against the SUV driver.

As in any accident, all of those innocent parties who were injured but not killed are also entitled to claim compensation from the negligent driver. The accident occurred on East Lamar Alexander Parkway at about 7:30 p.m. Although authorities stated that they did not know if the SUV driver was impaired by alcohol, they alleged that she was using drugs.

The two people killed were a 57-year-old male who was operating the motorcycle and his 51-year-old female passenger. It appears that they were husband and wife. In addition to the other motorcycle riders who were injured, a three-year-old girl, who was a restrained passenger in the SUV, was also injured. She would also have a claim for compensation against the driver.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol Critical Incident Response Team was on the scene and attempting to reconstruct what happened. Final investigative reports, as well as criminal charges, are pending. It is unlikely that the tortfeasor has sufficient liability insurance to compensate two wrongful deaths and several additional personal injury claims. If the wrongdoer had an umbrella policy for excess damages, there could be hope for adequate coverage.

Additionally, the victims must search their own liability policies to find the amount of underinsured motorists' coverage that they purchased. In some instances, the motorcycle underinsurance coverage can be supplemented with additional underinsurance benefits purchased on the cars and other vehicles in the same household. The best course for the injured Tennessee victims and the deceased victims' families is to consult with experienced personal injury attorneys, who will also have special expertise in finding the maximum insurance coverage available under the circumstances.

Source: thedailytimes.com, "Two Cordova residents killed, six injured in East Lamar Alexander Parkway crash", Wes Wade, May 24, 2015

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