According to LoHud.com, police have released the names of a 17-year-old from Chestnut Ridge teen and three other Rockland County residents who were injured in a fatal church van crash on October 1 on the Garden State Parkway in New Jersey.
The website reports that Velma Castro, 39, of Chestnut Ridge was killed in the crash. Andrea Cifuentes, 17, of Chestnut Ridge, Oralia Cifuentes, 46, of Nyack, Rolando Max, 37, of Chestnut Ridge and Oscar Martinez, 29, also of Chestnut Ridge, were hospitalized with injuries.
LoHud.com reported that Martinez was the driver of the van, which was built to carry 15 to 16 passengers but instead contained 23. The van reportedly collided with a NJ Transit bus at 7:35 p.m., near exit 159.
There were no passengers on the bus at the time of the crash, as it was on its way to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan. The van was reportedly taking Rockland County residents to Newark for a weekly Bible class at the Ministerio Bethel International Pentecostal Church.
While this accident remains under investigation, any organization has an obligation to protect its members against wrongful death and personal injuries. If the van was overloaded, it is possible that this could have helped ignite the accident.
Overloaded vehicles can lead to tire blowouts as the weight becomes too much to bear, or distracted driving, which can result in fatal car accidents. Aside from death, vehicle accidents can result in catastrophic personal injuries like traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, amputations and broken bones.
KGG lawyer Barry S. Kantrowitz assists victims and family members of negligent drivers. Contact us toll free at (800) 711-5258 to schedule a free initial consultation or complete the form on this page to let our skilled attorneys review your case.
Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman, P.C. – Rockland County Injury Lawyers
KGG’s Corner: According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, more than 20,000 people are injured each year in bus accidents.