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Automobile Collisions / Workers' Compensation

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Fitchburg teen driver believed drunk in crash that killed 4

There are no words to ease the pain for the loss of a loved one who died unexpectedly. The loss seems to deepen when the death is someone far too young as the result of a senseless accident.

Recently, four male passengers died following a rollover car accident at a Fitchburg railroad crossing. According to the Dane County medical examiner's office, two of the victims in the fatal car accident were residents of Madison. Two others who died had addresses in Rockford, Illinois.

Two 17-year-old boys, an 18-year-old man and a 25-year-old adult died when the teenage driver of a van driver lost control. Only the 18-year-old driver, a Madison teenager, survived the single-vehicle wreck.

Dane County police indicated that speed and drunk driving contributed to the late Saturday afternoon crash. The teen driver of the van apparently raced through a stop sign at a Fitchburg intersection on Lacy Road. The vehicle struck a stretch of railroad tracks, collided with a utility pole and overturned.

The four victims who lost their lives were not wearing seat belts and were thrown from the van during the accident. Three young men were pronounced dead at the crash scene. The fourth was critically injured. He was taken by air transport to a hospital, where the accident victim died the following day.

Officials did not identify which victim was airlifted from the rollover accident scene.

Police stated that the Madison van driver fled from the site of the wreckage. Authorities tracked the teen to a location a few blocks from the crash, where the suspect was taken into custody.

Initial published reports failed to indicate whether the driver was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash or if he was injured or hospitalized following the arrest.

No immediate charges were brought against the driver. Dane County authorities reported that the suspect is being held on pending multiple charges of homicide by drunken driving.

Source: news8000.com, "UPDATE: 4 victims identified from fatal Fitchburg crash," Feb. 20, 2012

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