According to the NY Daily News, the driver responsible for an early morning crash last Wednesday has been charged with DWI. The crash injured six people total, including the driver and a passenger in his car. Witnesses speculated that the driver may have been racing another car when the collision occurred in the East Village neighborhood.
The driver refused to take a test for drugs or alcohol at the scene, leading to the DWI charge. Additionally, narcotics were reportedly found hidden in his sock when he arrived at the hospital. Among those injured were a cyclist, who suffered minor injuries, and a florist, whose injuries were critical. It was unclear from the Daily News story if the driver was administered a chemical test at the hospital.
Clearly, if the motorist is found to have been intoxicated at the time of the accident, he faces serious criminal charges. Criminal charges could also arise even if the driver is found not to have been intoxicated, but participating in reckless driving, such as racing down a busy street in the early morning hours. Additionally, the recovery of the florist will play a role in what type of charges are eventually levied against the driver.
On the civil side of this matter, the driver will also likely be sued by the injured parties in a personal injury lawsuit. Since there were multiple people injured in the accident with varying injuries, the amount of insurance coverage available will play an important role in determining whether those injured will be fully compensated for any lost wages and/or pain and suffering.
On a further civil note, while certainly the least of the driver’s concerns right now, he may face a DMV refusal hearing for his decision not to take the on-site chemical test.
The Daily News will follow this story through to its conclusion. For now, accounts of the crash, as well as several graphic photographs of the scene after the crash, can be found on the Daily News website here.