Four people were killed in a wrong-way crash in Warren County, Ohio, after a wrong-way driver struck another vehicle on the Interstate 75 near Franklin. According to a WLWT news report, the fatal crash, which officials suspect was caused by a drunk driver, occurred early morning on December 23, 2012. Ohio State Patrol officials say 40-year-old Joshua Nkansah was driving with his children when he turned his minivan around on the highway and started driving the wrong way.
He drove at least a mile in the wrong direction before hitting another minivan carrying Scott and Michele Barhorst of Madisonville, Tennessee and their four children. Nkansah and his 7-year-old son David were killed as were Scott and Michele Barhorst. Nkansah’s 4-year-old son, Darius, and the Barhorsts’ 9-year-old daughter, Haley, were in critical condition. Troopers suspect alcohol was a factor after they found a bottle of alcohol in the wreckage of Nkansah’s vehicle.
I offer my deepest condolences to the Barhorst and the Nkansah families. It is heartbreaking that the four children lost both their parents right around Christmas Eve. Heartbreaking! My thoughts and prayers are also with injured children. I wish them the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.
Holiday DUI Deaths
Based on this news report, officials believe that Nkansah may have been under the influence when he turned his car around on the highway and started driving the wrong way. Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs is illegal. The U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) reports that 40 percent of traffic-related deaths during Christmas and New Year’s involve drunk drivers — a 12 percent increase over the rest of the month of December.
Drunk drivers, in addition to facing criminal charges, can also be held civilly liable for the damages they cause. Injured victims can seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, cost of hospitalization, pain and suffering and permanent injuries. Families of deceased DUI victims can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for damages such as medical and funeral costs, lost future income and loss of love and companionship.