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Wrongful death suit could result from Ontario crash

A girl is dead and another woman is facing charges after a fatal car accident in Markham on the morning of Nov. 18, according to local sources. Ontario police responded to the crash that claimed the life of a 17-year-old girl near Markham Road around 3 a.m. The woman driving the vehicle could face criminal charges and/or a wrongful death claim for her role in the accident. 

The accident report says an SUV was headed east when the 22-year-old driver did not correctly negotiate a turn on 14th Avenue. The vehicle struck a concrete median before rolling over several times. The force of the impact ejected the girl from the vehicle. She was pronounced dead at the scene. 

The driver and another passenger were rushed to a trauma center in Toronto with injuries described as serious. Both individuals were extricated from the vehicle by emergency response crews. The driver now faces charges of dangerous driving causing death. Police say there was heavy fog in the area at the time of the crash, and that this may have played a role in the accident. The Major Collision Unit is currently investigating. 

While inclement weather can sometimes be a contributing factor to an accident, it does not rule out or excuse driver error. Ontario law requires all drivers to operate their vehicles in a manner that is consistent and safe for the conditions on the road. As a result, even if the woman is not found guilty of the criminal charge, the deceased girl's family could move forward with a wrongful death suit in civil court, using police evidence from the criminal case. 

Source: CTV Toronto, "Teen girl killed in single-vehicle crash in Markham, female driver charged", Chris Fox, Nov. 18, 2016

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