Staten Island, NY-The two New Jersey officers who were critically injured in a wrong-way accident on Staten Island that killed two of their friends are in still critical but stable condition according to multiple reports.
Linden, New Jersey, police Officers Pedro Abad, 27, and Patrik Kudlac, 23, were seriously injured in the Friday crash that killed fellow Officer Frank Viggiano, 28, and friend Joe Rodriguez, also 28.
Authorities said that Officer Abad, who was behind the wheel, entered the West Shore Expressway going the wrong-way as the four men were headed home after drinking at a nearby strip club. After entering the southbound lanes, traveling north, the car struck a tractor-trailer head-on, CBS New York reported.
One tractor-trailer managed to avoid colliding with the car carrying the four men, but a second was unable to make evasive maneuvers. That driver suffered non-life threating injuries.
It is unclear if Abad was drunk when the crash occurred, but according to Fox 17, he posted a photo of three alcoholic drinks on his Instagram account hours before the crash. Authorities emphasized that they don’t know that Abad was intoxicated at the time of the crash, but they were in the process of securing a warrant to test Abad’s blood, according to CBS New York. Whether or not that warrant was executed is not known at this time.
Police said Abad drove the wrong direction for about a mile before the collision. Video surveillance shows them entering the expressway at 4:48; a 911 call was received at 4:51 a.m. according to Fox 17.
This was a tragedy and we sympathize the loved ones of these four men, but the fact that Abad was potentially drunk cannot be ignored. And we can only hope that the same laws apply to him as they do to any other drunken driver if tests reveal he was drunk when the crash occurred.
While wrong-way crashes can have a variety of causes, drunken driving is the most common according to the NTSB. Inattention, confusion and poor signage also frequently lead to wrong-way crashes which tend to be more deadly because they typically involve head-on impact.
Whether or not a driver causes a wrong-way crash because they were intoxicated or misread a sign, they are still liable for accident. Their victims have the right to seek out a Staten Island accident attorney to see if they are eligible for compensation for their injuries of the loss of a loved one.
Since wrong-way crashes tend to be serious, those who are lucky enough to survive suffer major injuries that can be costly and require extensive recovery times. A traffic accident can take a huge emotional toll on the victims and their family, and they need someone one their side, standing up for their rights. When you enlist one of our New York accident attorneys to work on your case, you can be confident they will build a strong injury claim and work to get you the accident settlement you need for your medical costs and pain and suffering.