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Car accidents: 1 dead in Louisiana

A serious four-vehicle crash in Ascension Parish claimed the life of a 21-year-old woman, according to authorities. Louisiana State Police from Troop A are still investigating the crash, which occurred around 2:30 p.m. on the afternoon of Feb. 17. As with many car accidents of this type, speed is suspected to have been a factor, and police have confirmed that charges are pending against one of the drivers involved. 

According to the report, a 17-year-old male was driving his vehicle northbound on Airline Highway at a rate of speed police believe to have been excessive. The 21-year-old victim was the front-seat passenger in his vehicle. For reasons unknown, the driver appeared to lose control of the car, which began rotating before crashing into the back of a pickup truck that had stopped due to traffic. This set off a chain of collisions that included two more vehicles. 

The passenger in the initial vehicle was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, but unfortunately the force of the impact injured her and the driver severely. They were both rushed to a local hospital, where she was later pronounced dead. The condition of the driver is not currently known. Police say intoxication is not considered a factor in this crash, but routine toxicology samples have been taken regardless. 

If it can be proven that the driver in this crash was indeed speeding, leading to a loss of control of his vehicle, he could face criminal charges. As with many car accidents causing injury or death, Louisiana state law will allow the family of his passenger to file a wrongful death lawsuit against him and anyone else with ownership interest in the involved vehicle. Such a lawsuit is handled in civil court, typically making use of police evidence from the crash to support the claim. 

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