Car accidents are always dangerous, but some types of accidents are more dangerous than others. Vehicle head-on crashes are responsible for approximately 14 percent of all U.S. traffic fatalities each year and 27 percent of all roadway departure (RwD) fatalities. Cities use center line pavement markings to define the road and separate opposing directions. In some cases, physical barriers are placed in between opposing lanes of traffic to reduce the risk of deadly collisions.

If you or a loved one was injured in a head on crash, contact a car accident lawyer for a consultation. The injury lawyer can review the particulars around your accident and discuss your legal rights.

What is a Head-On Crash?

One of the scariest types of car crashes a person can be involved in is a head-on collision. This type of accident happens when the front-end of two vehicles collide, most commonly on a road with no median to stop the vehicles from crossing lanes. According to data gathered by the Fatal Analysis Reporting System in 1999, 75 percent of head-on accidents occurred on un-divided two-lane roads.

Common causes of head-on collisions

  • Rural roads, neighborhood roads, and other roads that lack a median meant to stop vehicles from crossing over into the opposing lane
  • Poor construction-zone redirecting
  • Distracted driving
  • Failure to maintain vehicle control, failing to pass or overtake another vehicle
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol or when fatigued
  • Poor weather conditions such as ice
  • Breaking traffic rules or ignoring traffic signs and signals
  • Being unfamiliar with the area can cause confusion and lead to a driver turning down a one-way road and crashing head-on into another vehicle

Skagit County Head-On Crash Leads to Criminal Charges

As reported by Skagit Breaking, on December 1, 2023, around 9:59 p.m., the Washington State Patrol, along with local fire and emergency medical teams, responded to a head-on crash on State Route 9 near Bassett Road.

According to information released by the Washington State Patrol, a 56-year-old man from Oak Harbor, WA, was driving a 2004 Silverado pickup truck northbound on State Route 9 at Bassett Road. Allegedly under the influence of drugs or alcohol, his vehicle crossed the center line and collided head-on with a 2020 Jeep Compass traveling southbound on State Route 9. The Jeep was driven by 20-year-old Ashlyn Raine Abbott-Stroud from Arlington, Washington.

Mcarthur Jackson sustained injuries and was taken to Providence Hospital for treatment. His current condition is unknown. Ashlyn, on the other hand, was critically injured. She was initially transported to Skagit Valley Hospital in Mount Vernon and later to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where she succumbed to her injuries. Troopers noted that Ashlyn was wearing her seatbelt during the crash.

Both vehicles were deemed totaled and have been impounded at the Washington State Patrol District 7 bullpen as evidence. Initially facing charges of Driving Under the Influence and Vehicular Assault, Mcarthur’s charges will now include Vehicular Homicide.

Difference between Vehicular Assault and Vehicular Homicide

Vehicular assault and vehicular homicide are legal charges related to incidents involving vehicles, but they differ in terms of their severity and the outcome of the incident.

Vehicular Assault:

Vehicular assault typically refers to causing serious injuries to another person while operating a vehicle, often due to reckless or negligent behavior. This charge is applied when the driver’s actions lead to significant harm, but not necessarily death.

The focus is on the act of causing harm or injury, and the perpetrator may not have intended to cause such severe consequences.

Penalties for vehicular assault can include fines, license suspension, and imprisonment, depending on the severity of the injuries and the circumstances surrounding the incident.

Vehicular Homicide:

Vehicular homicide involves causing the death of another person while operating a vehicle. It is a more serious charge than vehicular assault because it involves a fatality.

In vehicular homicide cases, there is a recognition that the driver’s actions resulted in the loss of human life, and the charge implies a higher level of culpability.

Penalties for vehicular homicide are typically more severe than those for vehicular assault. They can include substantial fines, lengthy imprisonment, and, in some cases, permanent loss of driving privileges.

Contact a car accident lawyer today!

A car accident lawyer can help you recover a full and fair settlement for the injuries you sustained in a car accident with no up-front costs to you. We know the sneaky strategies used by insurance companies to get injured people to agree to settlements far below what they are worth. Our clients typically end up with a settlement or jury award that is five to ten times larger than they could have negotiated on their own. We have been representing people injured in Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. Contact the experienced and hard-working personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Mount Vernon, WA today for a FREE consultation!

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