Wrong-way Missouri car crash results in death, injuries

About an hour east of Joplin, a Missouri man was recently killed as he
drove the wrong way on U.S. 65. The 57-year-old Marshfield man drove south
in the northbound lane before slamming head-on into a mid-size SUV driven
by a 42-year-old Cape Fair woman.

She was
injured in the motor vehicle accident this past Monday morning just south of Springfield. She was taken to a
hospital, though officials did not disclose her medical condition.

The man was declared dead at the scene of the crash, the News-Leader reported.

According to a 2012 report from the National Transportation Safety Board,
wrong-way crashes are more likely to result in fatalities or serious injuries
than other types of highway accidents. One study found that wrong-way
accidents on controlled-access highways are 27 times as likely to result
in a fatality.

Another study found that more than one-fifth of all wrong-way highway accidents
cause a death, compared to just 0.3 percent for all other highway crashes.

Officials said of the Springfield crash that they don’t know why
the man was driving the wrong way on the highway.

But studies cited by the NTSB show that alcohol impairment is a major factor
in these collisions. Another factor that can be involved: age.

As drivers get older, they become more likely to be involved in such an
accident, especially when they are 70 or above.

As far as alcohol impairment is concerned, younger drivers are more likely
to be intoxicated and therefore driving the wrong way. Nearly two-thirds
of wrong-way drivers ages 20 to 39 had a blood alcohol of at least 0.08
percent (the legal threshold in Missouri), while just 8 percent of wrong-way
drivers over age 70 had a 0.08 BAC.

No matter what the cause, these violent collisions so often have devastating
consequences.

For injury victims and families who lose loved ones, a legal claim can
result in compensation for the financial burden imposed by a negligent
driver. A conversation with a personal injury and
wrongful death attorney is the first step in that process.

Source: News-Leader,
“Police name wrong-way driver killed in crash on U.S. 65; another
driver hurt,”
Jonathan Shorman, March 17, 2014

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