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Massachusetts woman dies in car wreck with teen driver

A woman from Massachusetts who was traveling out of state to see her grandson graduate from high school has tragically died in a car crash involving a 15-year-old driver. The teenage driver pulled her car directly into the path of the car driven by the son of the deceased. He and the teen were treated for minor injuries at the hospital and released.

The teen should not have been driving the car that day. The Florida Highway Patrol states that the teen violated her driving learner's permit, which required her to have someone 21 or older in the car with her at all times. Alcohol was not a factor in the accident, and it is unknown whether a cell phone may have been involved in the car accident.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Website:

• Teenagers are at particularly high risk of accidents during their first year of driving.

• As less experienced drivers, teens are more likely to underestimate dangers or overlook hazardous conditions.

• Teens are prone to speed and to follow the vehicles in front of them more closely than they should.

A driver or passenger who is involved in a car accident due to another's negligence is entitled to seek damages, including compensation from the negligent party for pain and suffering as a result of the accident, reimbursement for medical expenses and compensation for lost wages.

Massachusetts follows the doctrine of modified negligence in personal injury cases. A driver who is found to be 50 percent or less at fault in an accident will obtain a recovery reduced by the percentage of fault. Therefore, many insurance companies fight hard against valid claims for damages. That is why it is essential to obtain experienced legal counsel to receive adequate compensation for personal injury claims.

Source: The Boston Globe, "Mass. woman killed in Fla. Panhandle car accident," June 2, 2012

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