Tennessee has a graduated license program that allows teenagers younger than 18 to gain driving experience under adult supervision. As experience is gained, a driver graduates to less restrictive driving until eventual full licensure. When a teenager applies for a learner's permit, his or her parent or guardian will be required to sign the Minor/Teenage Affidavit and Cancellation form. This will hold the signing parent or guardian financially responsible for the actions of the teenage driver in the event of a car crash.
Unfortunately, not all teenage drivers comply with the restrictions of learner permits, often with devastating consequences. Shortly after midday on a recent Thursday, two teenagers lost their lives in a horrific crash in Maury County. According to an accident report by the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the car was driven by a 15-year-old boy who had a 17-year-old passenger in the car. It was reported that the driver was unrestrained at the time of the accident.
Officers reported that the teens were southbound when the driver lost control while navigating the vehicle around a curve on Theta Pike. After overcorrecting, the car reportedly traveled down an embankment and rolled over after smashing into a concrete barricade. The driver was ejected, and the vehicle burst into flames. Both occupants were killed. THP reported that excessive speed is suspected to have contributed to this fatal accident.
The parents of the young passenger who died in this car crash may seek to hold the parents of the 15-year-old driver accountable for financial and emotional losses. Recovery may be pursued by filing a wrongful death claim in a Tennessee civil court. Before the court considers any documented claims, liability will have to be established according to applicable personal injury laws.
Source: columbiadailyherald.com, "Two teens die in Theta Pike car accident", James Bennett, March 31, 2016