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Oroville: Drunk Driver Caused Crash that Injured Melissa Hetherwick and Seven Others


Shortly after 2 p.m. on Sunday, February 24, a drunk driver caused a crash that injured eight in Oroville. While traveling eastbound at what one witness estimated to be 70 mph on Montgomery Street in a 2003 Volkswagen sedan, 18-year-old Shaina L. Appleyard ran a stop sign at Huntoon Street, veered into the opposing lane of traffic, and collided head-on with a 2005 Toyota sedan. She proceeded to swerve onto the sidewalk, crashing into the bench on which two teenagers were sitting and a tree. The driver of the Toyota, 29-year-old Melissa Hetherwick, is reportedly 22 weeks pregnant. Emergency responders extricated her from the wreckage and transported her to an area hospital. The parents of the teenagers on the bench took them to area hospitals. Four passengers in the Volkswagen-29-year-old Alexandro Favela, 25-year-old Breanna Caracol, and two 16-year-old girls-were also injured, as was Appleyard. She was subsequently arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs causing injury. Authorities are investigating the crash.

“When vehicle occupants are injured in a collision, they may file personal injury claims against the at-fault driver in order to obtain compensation for the expense of their recoveries,” explained California car accident lawyer James Ballidis, “such as for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.”

Oroville accounted for 3 of the 35 fatalities and 95 of the 1,162 injuries suffered by motor vehicle occupants in crashes that occurred in Butte County in 2010, according to the California Highway Patrol’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System. Alcohol was a contributing factor to 206 of the accidents that resulted in injury or death in the city that year.

All of us at Allen, Flatt, Ballidis, and Leslie would like to wish a full recovery to Melissa Hetherwick and the seven others who were injured. originally reported this crash.

Additional information on the injury claims process is available to the public free of charge through our office.

If you would like to request a free book or article, or to speak with California car accident lawyer, feel free to call 866-981-5596.

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