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Officials accuse man of impaired driving in fatal crash

Authorities recently reported that a 41-year-old Allentown driver involved in a South Whitehall Township crash in May was on methadone and opiates at the time of the incident. According to the Pennsylvania State Police, a man was killed in the accident.

Police stated that the May 13 car accident took place on Route 22 at about 2:50 p.m., when the Allentown driver, a 41-year-old man, was traveling in a Chevrolet 1500 and crashed into a Buick LeSabre that was parked on the right shoulder of the road. The Allentown man had been traveling north on Route 309 and was attempting to merge onto Route 22 when he struck the Buick. As a result of the accident, the driver of the Buick, who had been standing behind the Buick, became pinned between the two vehicles.

The driver of the Buick died in the accident. The Allentown man suffered injuries as a result of the incident and received transport to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Muhlenberg, where police took blood samples for a toxicology test.

The toxicology report indicated that there were opiate and opiate-like substances present in the Allentown man's body. Officials detained the man and charged him with involuntary manslaughter, DUI, reckless endangerment, homicide by vehicle and homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence. Moreover, he was issued multiple traffic citations.

If a preponderance of evidence in this case were to substantiate the notion that impaired driving contributed to the accident, then the family of the decedent may seek financial compensation through civil action. By retaining a lawyer and filing a wrongful death lawsuit, certain family members of people who died in accidents caused by impaired drivers may be awarded restitution for end-of-life expenses and lost earnings associated with the decedent.

Source: Lehigh Valley Live, "Driver was high before striking car, fatally pinning man on Route 22, cops say", Sarah Cassi , September 11, 2014

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Gregory R. Gifford
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