Police have identified 18 year-old Chahid Omar Solamen as the driver in a one car accident in Greenville, North Carolina that left one person dead, and three hospitalized. An unknown fifth person walked away from the wreckage.
Solamen has been charged with Driving While Impaired, and more charges will likely follow due to the death of one of the passengers. At least three of the passengers were not wearing seatbelts and were ejected from the vehicle.
In 2009, over 45,000 drivers were involved in fatal car accidents and more than 10,000, or 22%, had a blood alcohol levels above .08. Of those drunk drivers, 35% were between the ages 21-24, 32% between the ages 25-34, and 19% between the ages 16-20. Those not even old enough to drink legally were responsible for 19% of drivers in drunk driving fatal accidents.
Until people get the message that it is not OK to drink and drive, these statistics will not decrease. As for the passengers in Mr. Solamen’s vehicle, if they knew or should have known that Solamen was under the influence of alcohol, it can prevent them from recovering damages. For more information, contact an experienced car accident attorney.