WNCT reports that a notoriously dangerous curve along Turkey Quarter Creek Road in Cove City, North Carolina has caused several accidents and recently claimed another life. A young girl, Jordan, and her father, Doug, were driving along that road when the tire on their car blew out. Doug lost control of the car and careened off the side of the road. The car landed in a concrete ravine and was obscured such that no one discovered the wreckage for two days. Doug was killed instantly, but Jordan, an incredibly resilient 9-year-old, managed to survive for two days trapped in the car with her dead father. A supply of PopTarts and Gatorade was all she had.
Jordan’s mother, Claudette Leohmann, believes that the accident could have been prevented. This is not the first accident on the dangerous stretch of road. According to Leohmann, there have been at least 20 on the same section of roadway over the past several years. This many accidents should have been sufficient for the North Carolina Department of Transportation to take notice. The DOT now says they are aware of the issue and have begun an investigation into the curve. Leohmann says that it’s too little too late. The lover her life is already gone and her daughter has been scarred by having to endure such a tragedy.
The question now becomes whether anyone can be held responsible for the dangerous curve at Turkey Quarter Creek. If any such claim arises it will be one of negligence on the part of the North Carolina Department of Transportation for failing to make the road safe for drivers. The problem will be in establishing the duty element of any negligence claim.
For a person or entity to be liable for negligence, there must have been a duty owed and a subsequent breach of that duty. There must also be actual and proximate causation and damages. It is unlikely that any North Carolina court would hold that the DOT owed a duty to the first accident victims. However, once it came to the Department of Transportation’s attention that the road posed a special danger to even the safest and most cautious drivers, the failure to do something to remedy the situation may rise to the level of a negligent breach of duty.
Negligence, breach, damages. These are all words that can be confusing to someone who is not familiar with the ins and outs of the legal system. If you or someone you know becomes injured under similar circumstances, it is important that you contact the skilled Charlotte personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith PLLC. Please do not hesitate to call (704) 370-2828 for a free consultation today.
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