A teenage driver was killed and a 24-year-old man was seriously injured Saturday in an early-morning head-on crash on Arden Way, in the Arden-Arcade area of Sacramento. Police say they believe drunk driving is what triggered the crash.
The report on Sacto 9-1-1 says Augustin Valdovinos-Ocampo, 19, of Sacramento, was westbound on Arden Way in a 1994 Nissan pickup truck at about 4:30 a.m. last Saturday. At a point just to the east of Bell Avenue, Valdovinos-Ocampo crossed over the center line and into the eastbound lanes.
The Nissan smashed head-on into a Chevy truck being driven by an unnamed 24-year-old male. When emergency responders arrived on the scene, the discovered that the driver of the Chevy had suffered serious, potentially life-threatening injuries. He was rushed to a local hospital.
Valdovinos-Ocampo did not survive the crash. He was pronounced dead at the scene. According to CHP Officer Liz Dutton, they believe Valdovinos-Ocampo was drunk at the time of the crash.
Drunk driving continues to plague the roads and highways of the Sacramento area, and indeed the country as a whole. Clearly, more should be done to stop intoxicated drivers from getting behind the wheel of a vehicle, where they represent a horrible danger to both themselves and other road users.
This accident has now severely impacted two more Sacramento-area families. Valdovinos-Ocampo has paid the ultimate price, but the young man who was driving the Chevy truck also has to deal with a number of very serious issues. Who will pay his medical bills? What about the lost income from time off work? Will he require ongoing treatment, and if so, who pays for that? Worst of all, what happens if, God forbid, he doesn’t recover; how will his family keep going, financially and emotionally?
If it is proven that Valdovinos-Ocampo was at fault for this tragic accident, his insurance company could be held liable for the other man’s medical bills, lost income and pain and suffering. The injured man or his family would be well advised to seek the help of a competent and experienced Sacramento personal injury attorney. A good attorney will advise the family how to go about making a claim and what to do in the event the at-fault driver was either uninsured or under-insured.