On December 12, 2020, tragedy struck Cleveland Comfort Suites hotel owner David Kumar and his family. David, his wife, and their two teenage sons, Ravi and Neal, left their hotel on Saturday night, heading towards their home.
As the family was traveling home, they got stuck in traffic on I-69 at SH-105. The Kumar family was coming to a stop when 28 year old Cory Messer slammed into the back of the family’s vehicle. According to news reports, Messer was driving a Dodge 2500 commercial van owned by Gulf Coast Fiber Services, and was traveling at highway speed when he struck the Kumar’s vehicle.
Fourteen-year-old Ravi Kumar was killed instantly in the crash. Cleveland firefighters were able to get Neal out of the family’s vehicle and start performing CPR. Neal was transported to HCA Hospital in Cleveland to receive immediate medical attention. Tragically, Neal passed away shortly after arrival.
David Kumar and his wife were also treated and released from the hospital. The at-fault driver, Cory Messer, was not injured, but was reportedly taken to the hospital for a mandatory drug and alcohol screening test.
There are no words that can do justice to what the Kumar family is going through right now. But, having met with and helped families who have suffered losses like this, we know that an important question that families want answered is why this happened.
The best way to find out why is to bring in the right team to dig deep and find those answers.
The right accident reconstructionist working for the family can help. The Gulf Coast Fiber van likely has a black box, which will reveal the speed of the vehicle and the braking activity immediately before impact. Likewise, many company vehicles are equipped with dash-cams. Such information may be useful both for answering the question of why this crash occurred, and preparing any legal claims. But not all reconstructionist know everything to look for.
Similarly, it is important to investigate the company’s history, to find out how they prepare their drivers to get on the road. This takes attorneys with experience in investigating companies large and small.
Accordingly, if the family decides to seek legal counsel, it’s important that the family contact a law firm that is not only aware of these issues but is also capable of dispatching the right team to examine the vehicles involved, as well as the crash scene. No doubt, the insurance company for Gulf Coast Fiber Services is already sifting through the evidence to prepare its defense.
An early investigation by attorneys and experts representing the accident victims is crucial. Such an early investigation will level the playing field for the families when dealing with insurance companies and their lawyers. At Linebaugh, Dority & Allen, we have the team needed to investigate a crash like this on speed dial. We know what to do and how to do it. And, we offer free consultations for people hurt in any crash, big or small.