Gibbs & Fuerst, LLP

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High school provides counselors after teens die in crash

The death of two teenagers in Arvin prompted administrators at the local high school to prepare for grieving students. The California Highway Patrol confirmed that two young men, ages 14 and 16, perished when they were ejected from a 2004 Honda Accord that rolled over after hitting a dirt mound at a high rate of speed. In response to the news, the principal of Arvin High School transformed the school's career center into a counseling area. Psychologists, counselors and mental health workers met with students upset by the loss of classmates.

The school also expressed condolences to the victims' families. Students met at lunch time to write notes of remembrance and make posters honoring the deceased. The principal said that the messages would be given to the grieving families.

The car crash involved five teenagers. The driver and two passengers who survived experienced moderate injuries. The CHP reported that the Honda had been speeding southbound on Malaga Road. The driver missed a stop sign at Buena Vista Road and eventually lost control of the car and went off the road. The vehicle rolled several times before coming to a rest. Authorities have ruled out alcohol as a contributing factor to the accident.

The surviving family members of a person who has been killed in a car accident that was caused by a negligent driver often have both immediate and long-term financial consequences to deal with in addition to their grief. Funeral and burial expenses must be paid, and in some cases the decedent helped to pay household expenses. They may want to meet with an attorney to see if a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation from the at-fault motorist would be an advisable step to take.

Source: ABC 23, "Two Arvin teens killed, three injured in crash Friday night", Jessica Harrington, Sept. 19, 2016

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