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3 dead, 5 injured in tragic accident involving church van

An accident involving a church van and a box truck on Interstate 79 in Harrison County, West Virginia, claimed the lives of three people and sent another five people to the hospital.

The accident occurred as the church van was en route to the "Festival of Life" event, which is a two-week long evangelistic event in Clarksburg, West Virginia. It is hosted by four churches in the area and is known to attract hundreds of participants.

According to a Bridgeport City police lieutenant, the van was about six miles from the festival when the accident happened. The driver of the van, who had three children, was killed, as were two teenage girls, ages 17 and 16 when the box truck crossed the median and hit the van. Three other students in the van were injured, and after receiving medical treatment, were sent home with minor abrasions. The two occupants of the box truck were also injured.

The lieutenant also said that the investigation indicates that there was a malfunction of some sort in the box truck that caused the vehicle to cross the median; however, there were no further details given.

Three GoFundMe accounts have been created, and the church is trying to raise money to help the families of the victims with burial expenses.

When a loved one is lost in an accident that was caused by someone else's negligence or recklessness, the family members have a right to seek compensation. However, if it is determined that there was a vehicle defect that caused the accident, the vehicle's or auto parts manufacturer may be named as a defendant in a wrongful death lawsuit. A lawyer can help you determine which defendants to include in such lawsuits and what other legal options may be available.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Canonsburg church mourns loss of community members," Karen Kane, Sep. 12, 2016

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