A 19-year-old DeBary man has been charged with two counts of vehicular homicide and one count of reckless driving causing serious injury in connection with a “car surfing” incident. Police say the man was behind the wheel of a 2001 Nissan Xterra when he lost control and threw two passengers riding on the outside. Orlando personal injury attorney James O. Cunningham would like to caution all Florida drivers that it only takes a moment to do something that you’ll regret for the rest of your life, and this sad story is an unfortunate example of this.
Police say the accident occurred last February 1 in the 700 block of Fort Florida Road in DeBary when the driver allowed two friends to ride on the outside of his car while it traveled at high speeds. The victims, an 18-year-old Orange City man and an 18-year-old DeBary man, were riding outside the driver’s door and on the back bumper when the driver lost control and the vehicle burst into flames. The teen riding on the outside of the driver’s door was thrown an undisclosed distance from the car and landed in a ditch. The other victim was trapped in the car when it burst into flames and was unable to escape the burning vehicle.
Another passenger who was unhurt in the accident was recording video of the car surfing incident before the crash. Police confiscated the cell phone used to take the video and used it as evidence against the driver. The video showed that the vehicle traveled at speeds up to 80 mph prior to the crash, and accident reconstruction experts estimate that the car was traveling around 67 mph in a 35 mph zone when the driver lost control and rolled the vehicle.
“One portion of the video even showed the vehicle’s speedometer hovering at around 80 mph,” one investigating officer said. “Prior to the crash, according to investigators, the five teens drove up and down Fort Florida Road, changing positions and taking turns riding on the exterior of the vehicle.”
Orlando personal injury lawyer James O. Cunningham knows all too well that teen drivers often engage in very risky behavior while behind the wheel, such as drag racing, car surfing, bumper surfing and other foolish and potentially deadly activities. In many cases, innocent bystanders are injured or killed during these stunts when a young driver loses control. If a reckless driver has injured you or a close family member and you would like to seek compensation, contact Mr. Cunningham today at 888-425-2004 or 407-425-2000.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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