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Church officials face wrongful death suit

California organizations that promote and organize events accept a degree of responsibility for event participants. Moreover, any time transportation services are coordinated for a group of people, those responsible for making the arrangements are charged with ensuring that the transportation provider is qualified and in good legal standing.

A large passenger van traveling from California to Maryland was a full day into the trip when the vehicle veered out of control and crashed last spring. The single-vehicle accident occurred in the midmorning when the van carrying 11 people on their way back from a church conference in Ontario crossed the lanes of the interstate and flipped over. Nine of the 11 passengers in the vehicle were reportedly ejected. Six of the accident victims required medical treatment at area hospitals. Tragically, five other passengers died at the scene of the accident.

The family of one of the fatality victims filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the church that organized the cross-country trip. Two church officials were identified as defendants in the suit, and were accused of wrongfully allowing the van driver to operate the vehicle since his license was suspended at the time. The lawsuit alleged negligence and sought damages in the amount of $5 million.

Families of fatality victims are forced to endure the immediate and long-term effects of their loved ones’ passing. And for individuals that survive serious accidents, the physical and emotional trauma of such events can neither be underestimated nor truly understood. Obtaining legal representation is often an effective way to ensure that victims and their families receive the financial and medical support they require.

Source: The Baltimore Sun, “Family of man killed in van crash sues church,” Ian Duncan, June 28, 2014

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