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One Dies in Rural Hamilton County Car Accident

Jason Reese

A rural accident in Hamilton County resulted in the death of 52-year-old Patricia Douglass. She was driving her green Honda CR-V north on Mule Barn Road when Travis Correll, 30, reportedly ran a stop sign at 206th Street and Mule Barn, striking Douglass’s car on the driver’s side. Both the CR-V and Correll’s gray Mercury Sable were thrown off the road by the impact, landing on the northeast corner of the intersection.

The accident occurred just before 9 am on Friday morning, in the rural area northwest of Westfield. Correll was treated and released on-site, while an adult passenger was airlifted to St. Vincent Hospital as a result of pain. A child, also a passenger in Correll’s vehicle, was taken to Riley Children’s Hospital out of an abundance of caution. Patricia Douglass was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.

Toxicology tests for drugs and alcohol were taken, as is standard in fatal car accidents, and the results are still pending. We will be following this tragic accident as the investigation evolves.

Indiana is a “Hotspot” for Rural Accidents

The Center for Excellence in Rural Safety’s (CERS) SafeRoadMaps Project lists Indiana as one of the top ten states for its high concentration of rural traffic deaths, with 68% of traffic fatalities in the state occurring in rural areas. This high percentage of rural traffic deaths may seem counterintuitive since only 14% of the state’s population lives in fully rural areas and another 24% of Indiana residents residing in “mixed rural” counties. The statistics are not as surprising as they might seem, however, largely due to the nature of rural roads. They are narrower, often one lane in each way, with possible agricultural obstructions. Certainly, they can be less well lit, and wildlife crossing the road play a role in many accidents. Perhaps most importantly, the relatively fewer number of drivers on rural roads may lull drivers into a false sense of safety.

Drivers, especially younger drivers or those under the influence of drugs or alcohol, may take dangerous risks. In the absence of traffic, they may incorrectly mentally downplay the danger of high speeds, leading to serious accidents involving fatalities. Speed plays a role in rural accidents in a number of ways, by making it difficult to see and respond to traffic signals (which may be infrequently placed) or to maneuver on the roadway to avoid other obstacles, including other cars.

Have you or a loved one experienced loss or injury in a rural accident?

The vehicular accident attorneys at Wagner Reese have the experience you need to potentially secure compensation and assist you with your recovery. If you have lost a loved one as the result of the wrongdoing of another driver, our wrongful death attorneys have the years of knowledge you need to ensure your family is taken care of while you grieve. If you’ve been injured, or if you lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligent driving, call our offices today at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a free consultation.

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