Driving above the speed limit may not seem like a big deal, but it certainly can be. Knowing how to control a vehicle at high speeds takes specialized training that the average West Virginia driver doesn’t receive. Speed limits are there to help prevent a car accident by letting a driver know what the top speed a vehicle can safely travel a road.

When a driver decides to exceed those speed limits, they increase their chances of having a car accident. It’s easier to lose control of a vehicle at a higher rate of speed. Police in West Virginia believe that’s what happened to a pickup truck that swerved to avoid a deer. The Hancock County Sheriff’s Office believes that the pickup truck was traveling at a high rate of speed when it avoided the deer, side-swiped a guardrail, slid sideways, went off the shoulder and leapt a culvert causing the truck to roll over.

The two passengers riding in the bed of the truck were ejected and were taken to a nearby hospital along with the driver. The passenger in the cab of the truck had to be extracted from the truck and died from his injuries. Authorities are still investigating the accident and have not determined whether alcohol or drugs were an additional factor in the accident.

Regardless of what the official investigation uncovers, one man is dead and three others are injured. The driver of the pickup truck may or may not receive any citations or charges as a result of this car accident. Nevertheless, the passengers who survived may decide to file personal injury lawsuits; in the case of the deceased victim, the surviving family may pursue a wrongful death action to recover the financial losses that are inevitable in these situations. Filing civil actions against the driver won’t undo the damage, but proof of negligence may help prevent turning a personal tragedy into a financial one as well.

Source: WTRF-TV, “UPDATE: 1 dead 3 injured in Hancock County accident,” Colin Lawler, Sept. 3, 2012