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New Jersey crash caused by dump truck, authorities state

Authorities reported on Nov. 26 that a fatal New Jersey Turnpike accident that took place the previous day was caused by a dump truck that had been traveling along the shoulder of the roadway. Reportedly, the dump truck struck a vehicle that was stopped on the shoulder.

The stopped vehicle, a 2010 Ford Crown Victoria, had pulled over on the southbound shoulder of the New Jersey Turnpike sometime before 6:30 p.m., when it was struck by the dump truck. The collision caused the two vehicles to burst into flames. According to authorities, the driver of the Ford and the driver of dump truck both managed to escape their vehicles, though a backseat passenger in the Ford became trapped. The passenger, whose identity was not released, died, authorities reported.

The driver of the Ford was transported to a hospital and was treated for injuries that reportedly appeared to be minor. The driver of the dump truck did not suffer any injuries in the collision, authorities said. Authorities also stated that the accident was still under investigation, though they did not anticipate that any charges would be brought against the dump truck driver.

When people die in an automobile accident, the family members of the deceased person may potentially possess grounds to file a wrongful death claim in civil court, naming the at-fault driver as the defendant. This type of civil action can be filed regardless of whether the at-fault driver is facing criminal charges. Civil lawsuits, such as a wrongful death claim, may allow the deceased person's family members to seek compensation for their losses, including the cost of the decedent's funeral, any medical bills resulting from medical treatment for accident injuries prior to death and even lost earnings.

Source: NJ.com, "Passenger who died in Turnpike crash was trapped in car when fire broke out, police say", Katie Lannan, November 26, 2014

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