Fatal Tiverton Car Accident

As reported by Bryan Rourke in the October 4, 2010 edition of the Providence Journal, a car accident on Main Road in Tiverton killed one (1) person. The woman who was killed was a passenger in the vehicle. It is believed that the other driver crossed the center line and hit the car she was riding in head-on. Both of the drivers and all passengers involved in the accident were taken to the hospital.

Crossing over the center line into another driver's lane of travel is a type of laned roadway violation. Under R.I.G.L. 31-15-11, a laned roadway violation is defined as: Whenever any roadway has been divided into two (2) or more clearly marked lanes for traffic, the following rules in addition to all others consistent with them shall apply:

(1) A vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practical entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from the lane until the driver has first ascertained that the movement can be made with safety.

(2) Upon a roadway which is divided into three (3) lanes, a vehicle shall not be driven in the center lane except when overtaking and passing another vehicle where the roadway is clearly visible and the center lane is clear of traffic within a safe distance, or in preparation for a left turn or where the center lane is at the time allocated exclusively to traffic moving in the direction the vehicle is proceeding and is sign-posted to give notice of the allocation.

(3) Official signs may be erected directing slow-moving traffic to use a designated lane or designating those lanes to be used by traffic moving in a particular direction regardless of the center of the roadway, and drivers of vehicles shall obey the directions of the sign.

As more details from the accident unfold, it is possible the other driver could face criminal charges including reckless driving. Under R.I.G.L. 31-27-4, reckless driving is defined as any person who operates a motor vehicle recklessly so that the lives or safety of the public might be endangered, or operates a vehicle in an attempt to elude or flee from a traffic officer or police vehicle, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor for the first conviction and a felony for the second and each subsequent conviction.

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