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The Matassini Law Firm, P.A. Your trusted legal advisors since 1976

Head-On Port Richey Wreck Kills Immigrant


A 24-year-old man, who was originally from Honduras, is dead after a head-on collision that also sent two other people to the hospital.

The wreck occurred in Jasmine Estates near the Embassy Boulevard/Crabtree Lane intersection. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the 24-year old man, whose name was not released, lost control of his Ford Focus. He drove onto the sidewalk and then careened back onto Embassy, where he collided head-on with a Hyundai driven by 41-year-old Paula Tsurara.

The Focus driver was declared dead at the scene. Tsurara and her passenger, 61-year-old Wanda Artressia, were rushed to a nearby hospital with serious injuries.

Determining Liability in Head-On Wrecks

When drivers cross the center line and collide with other vehicles, there is a presumption that such drivers are legally responsible for the crash. That’s especially true if the wreck occurred in a no-passing area.

However, this outcome is only a presumption, because of the last clear chance doctrine. All drivers have a duty of reasonable care, no matter what other drivers do or don’t do.

In the above collision, assume Tsurara saw the Focus cross the center line several hundred feet ahead of her. Since the Focus driver was already operating very erratically, she definitely should have seen him. If Tsurara did nothing to avoid the crash, she could be legally responsible for the wreck.

There are usually two sides to every story. Frequently, these wrecks happen so fast that drivers like Tsurara could not avoid them. If they make sudden evasive maneuvers, they might cause a worse crash than the one they prevent.

The lesson is clear. If you were involved in a head-on wreck, always have a Tampa personal injury attorney evaluate your case. Even if you received a ticket for crossing the center line, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries.

This compensation usually includes money for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.

Resolving Head-On Crash Claims

Most vehicle collision claims settle out of court. But the process usually takes time, especially in serious injury wrecks where medical bills are high and damages are large.

It’s usually not a good idea to begin serious settlement negotiations until medical treatment is at least substantially complete. An attorney must know the amount of current medical expenses, as well as the likely amount of future medical expenses. If the case settles too soon, the settlement might not include all these costs. It’s almost impossible to reopen a closed personal injury claim.

Economic losses are not always easy to determine. Smart attorneys know to look beyond simple lost wages and medical bills. To calculate noneconomic losses, most attorneys multiply the economic damages by two, three, or four, largely depending on the facts and circumstances of an individual case.

Reach Out to Assertive Lawyers

Head-on wrecks are usually very complex. For a free consultation with an experienced Tampa car accident lawyer, contact The Matassini Law Firm, P.A. We routinely handle matters in Hillsborough County and nearby jurisdictions. Since 1976 The Matassini Law Firm has been helping Florida families seek justice in car crash cases and serious injury claims.

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