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

Car crash victims injured by cell-phone talking tortfeasor

A great deal of human suffering could have been avoided at 5 a.m. on Friday, June 26, had a 26-year-old GMC Envoy driver not been talking on his cell phone while driving on the ramp to Interstate 275 north from Interstate 40 west. He rear-ended a car in front of him, causing a chain reaction that sent at least five persons to the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville. The police said that criminal charges were pending against him for causing the car crash.

According to the Knoxville Police Department, traffic in the area had slowed down due to construction. The police also indicated that their investigation revealed that the GMC driver was talking on a cell phone when he plowed into the first car, a Ford Mustang driven by a 24-year-old female who resides in Rocky Top. Unfortunately, she was critically hurt and is now battling for her life in the medical center.

A passenger in her car was also injured and transported to the hospital. The suspected tortfeasor faces potential personal injury claims from all of the injured victims. Whether he has sufficient insurance to provide proper compensation for all of the injuries is unknown at this time. In situations where the tortfeasor's liability coverage is insufficient to pay full compensation to each victim, the victims must look at their own policies to determine whether they bought underinsured motorists' coverage.

The underinsured provision in one's own policy covers the situation where the primary tortfeasor does not have sufficient coverage to compensate all victims of the car crash. If one purchased $100,000 of underinsured motorists' coverage, for example, the victim's own insurer would pay up to $100,000 toward its own insured's medical care and treatment. Each one of the injured victims should have their Tennessee vehicle insurance policies collected for examination by personal injury counsel. If there are other driving adults in the household, their policies should also be reviewed to determine whether the coverage is tied in with any of the other policies in the household.

Source: wate.com, "4-vehicle wreck in Knox County leaves 1 in critical condition", June 26, 2015

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