A 13-year-old boy was killed and a 13-year-old girl was hospitalized following a recent head-on collision in Santa Fe County. According to Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office Captain Adam Mendoza, 43-year-old Dennis Bernal of Santa Fe was headed north on New Mexico 4 when he unexpectedly lost control of the Toyota pick-up truck he was driving as he navigated a curve in the roadway. He reportedly crossed the center line and struck the front of a southbound Honda sedan that was carrying three people. Mendoza stated it appears that the two motorists attempted to avoid a collision immediately before the Toyota struck the front driver’s side of the Honda.
Following the crash, Bernal was treated for minor injuries at Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe. Emergency responders transported the driver of the Honda, 41-year-old Jennifer Ventura-Trujillo of Los Alamos, to Los Alamos Medical Center with minor injuries. A 13-year-old girl who was riding in the front passenger seat was taken to the same hospital by emergency helicopter where she reportedly remains in stable condition. Tragically, a 13-year-old Los Alamos boy who was riding in the back seat of the Honda died at the scene of the accident. Mendoza stated it was unclear whether he was wearing a safety belt at the time of the collision.
The exact cause of the fatal crash is still under investigation. According to Mendoza, accident witnesses said Bernal was driving erratically prior to the collision. Although there was reportedly no indication that alcohol played a role in the incident, Mendoza stated Bernal submitted to chemical blood tests. The results are currently pending.
Head-on collisions normally occur when a motorist drives on the wrong side of the roadway. Common factors in head-on crashes include illegal passing, speeding, inattention, impairment, inclement weather, and road defects. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 82 percent of head-on crashes nationwide result in the death of a driver or passenger. If you were hurt in a head-on collision that was caused by another driver, you may be eligible to recover damages for your medical expenses, disability, pain, suffering, and lost benefits and wages. If you lost a loved one in a New Mexico motor vehicle crash, you may also be entitled to file a wrongful death claim. A qualified car accident lawyer can explain your rights in more detail.
Contact the experienced attorneys at the Fine Law Firm if you were injured or lost a close relative in a head-on or other automobile collision. Our skilled Los Alamos car accident lawyers have more than 100 years of combined experience representing the victims of injury accidents throughout New Mexico. At the Fine Law Firm, our knowledgeable attorneys are here to help you receive the compensation you deserve following an unexpected injury. To discuss your rights with a dedicated attorney, give the Fine Law Firm a call at (505) 889-3463 or schedule a free confidential case evaluation through the law firm’s website.
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Preliminary Survey Results Suggest Drinking and Driving Among Santa Fe County Teens Has Declined, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, November 3, 2012
Girl stable after crash that killed 13-year-old boy, by Nico Roesler, Santa Fe New Mexican
Photo credit: chidsey, Stock.xchng