Three children were killed and two people seriously injured in an auto accident in Bastrop County on Sunday afternoon.
The accident occurred when two Houston mothers were driving with their families. According to news reports, the driver, Tiffany Bowman, failed to yield to oncoming traffic leading to her Dodge Caravan being struck by a pickup truck. Bowman’s passengers included Priscilla Gonzalez and her four children, as well as Bowman’s one-year-old daughter. Three of Gonzalez’s children aged 5, 8 and 9 years were killed instantly. Her six-year-old daughter and Bowman’s daughter sustained injuries, and were rushed to the hospital where they still remain in a critical condition.
According to police officers responding to the scene, Bowman’s daughter and Gonzalez were the only two occupants of the vehicle wearing seat belts.
This is one of those times when we don’t react as Houston car accident lawyers, but as parents ourselves. This is such a horrific tragedy on so many levels. Our hearts go out to the family of Priscilla Gonzalez who has lost three of her children, and is anxiously awaiting the recovery of her other child. With three innocent lives lost here, we wonder why the children were not restrained in the car.
However, this tragedy serves as a reminder about the importance of restraining children properly in vehicles. It’s impossible to know right now if these children could have been saved if they were wearing seat belts, or had been properly restrained in child booster seats. However, it’s a fact that restraining your child either in a child safety seat, booster seat or seat belts depending on his age, greatly lowers the risk of being ejected during a rollover, or being flung about inside the interior of the car.
As a reminder, the Texas legislature changed the child restraint laws as of September 1, 2009 requiring that children under the age of 8 or up to 4′9 must be in a carseat or booster seat. However, everyone in the vehicle should be in a seat belt.
If you or a loved one has been involved in an auto accident, contact the Husband and Wife Legal Team at The Kahn Law Firm today for a free case evaluation at 713-226-9900.