One of the benefits of attending a top-flight university is the additional enrichment opportunities provided to students. A group of Boston University students were taking advantage of a study abroad experience in Auckland, New Zealand, when their adventure took a tragic turn.
Multiple news sources tell of a group of 26 students who were taking a holiday hiking trip on the Tongariro Crossing which is a reportedly spectacular volcanic crater. A caravan of three minivans was on its way, when one of the drivers drifted off the road. The driver over-corrected and rolled the minivan. The motor vehicle accident occurred on the North Island vacation near the town of Taupo.
Three Boston University students died at the scene of the crash. The other five students in the rollover were all injured. One of them, a 21-year-old woman, was the most seriously injured. She was the only one who was not a BU student, but was instead working as an intern with One Disease at a Time in Sidney, Australia. She knew the other students and joined them on the New Zealand hiking trip.
Her head injuries were reportedly too severe to transport her back to the United States, so her parents have flown to New Zealand.
The 21-year-old graduated from Newburyport High School in 2009. Her friends at home have started a fund-raising drive to help pay for her medical costs and the expenses involved in bringing her parents to join her in New Zealand.
An overseas accident can be costly in a number of ways. Was the 21-year-old insured? How will the other injured students be transported home? Is the Boston University student who was driving at fault? Could BU be held liable for any reason?
Whenever there is an accident that is due to someone else’s negligence, the injured parties may be able to obtain compensation for damages including pain and suffering or wrongful death.
The Boston University study abroad program has reportedly never had a tragedy like this since its inception in the 1980s.
Source: The Salem News, “Fund started to aid woman hurt in crash,” Dave Rogers, May 17, 2012