New graduate killed in Miami car accident

A recent Southwest Miami High School graduate, returning home with four friends, lost her life in a two-vehicle car accident in Olympia Heights. The crash claimed the life of the 18-year-old just after midnight, only 10 minutes after the young lady called her mother to tell her she was coming home after dropping off her friends.

While motionless at a stop sign at Southwest 52nd Street and 87th Avenue, a full-size SUV crashed into the left side of the victim’s car. The SUV produced a violent impact as it broad-sided the smaller auto. First responders needed to use the Jaws of Life to remove the victim’s passengers. Unfortunately, the new graduate was pronounced dead at the crash scene.

Her four passengers, all suffering serious personal injuries, were transported to Kendall Regional Hospital for treatment. The severity of their injuries is not surprising, as the large SUV pushed the smaller car into the median. The 45-year-old SUV driver was also trapped in her vehicle, challenging rescuers to remove her safely.

The Florida Highway Patrol stated that no formal charges have yet been filed against anyone. Records indicate that the SUV driver has some minor traffic violations, including a recent June 1st citation for failure to stop at a traffic light. Regardless of whether criminal charges are filed, the woman could still face a civil wrongful death action.

The family and friends of the young victim described her as “high spirited” with many friends. Family members came to give comfort to the victim’s mother at her Westchester apartment. The victim and her mother were very close, with the daughter telling her mother, “I love you,” every time she left her home.

The victim’s father lives in Columbia, but the new graduate recently contacted him, describing her plans for a visit to her native country. Her 19th birthday would have been July 30. She planned to enter Florida International University in the fall. Her untimely death will most certainly cause her to be missed by many.

Source: Miami Herald, “Family, friends mourn recent Southwest Miami High graduate killed in crash,” Daniela Guzman, July 5, 2012