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There is no question that police officers have difficult jobs. However, they must obey the laws just as civilians do, including declining to drive while under the influence of alcohol. Unfortunately, alcohol is suspected to have played a role in a recent fatal accident in California that resulted in the loss of three lives and the arrest of an off-duty police officer.

The incident happened one night in late September. Reports indicate that the 26-year-old police officer was driving in the carpool lane of a California freeway when he abruptly moved into the lane to his right. Unfortunately, his vehicle allegedly struck the rear of a sedan. That vehicle burst into flames.

All three occupants of the second vehicle were reportedly trapped by the flames, and they all perished. While police say that the victims were two parents and their teenage son, their identities have yet to be confirmed due to the extent of the injuries they suffered. The police officer’s vehicle then allegedly struck another vehicle; the driver of that vehicle suffered minor injuries. Alcohol is suspected to have played a role in the crash.

Unfortunately, this is not the only accident in California that is suspected to be the result of a driver who was under the influence of alcohol. Because the decision to drink and drive has physical, emotional and financial ramifications, surviving family members often choose to file a wrongful death lawsuit following a fatal accident. While a successfully presented case will likely do little to relieve their emotional burden, it can help them manage the financial consequences of their loss.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “Off-duty LAPD officer suspected of DUI in crash that killed 3 in Whittier“, Joseph Serna and Kate Mather, Sept. 27, 2017