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Police: Drunk trucker slammed 18-wheeler into car, killed driver

A truck driver who is rolling through Charlotte on I-85 today might be pulling into Los Angeles in a couple of days and then dropping off a load in Chicago a few days after that. Truckers' mobility is one of their most valuable assets.

But that same mobility makes it clear that the bad driving behavior we see elsewhere can appear just as easily right here in North Carolina. We read of a recent tractor-trailer crash in which the truck driver is accused of being drunk and causing the death of a motorist.

The deadly wreck happened in New York City near the famed George Washington Bridge when a 23-year-old trucker slammed his 18-wheeler into the back of a 1997 Toyota. The small car was unrecognizable after the early morning collision on the Cross Bronx Expressway.

The trucker is also accused of driving off after the crash.

The 25-year-old New Jersey man behind the wheel of the Toyota was reported dead at the scene. His two passengers -- a 28-year-old woman and a 39-year-old woman -- were hospitalized and listed in critical condition. Officials said both are expected to survive their injuries.

Law enforcement officials reported that they tracked down the truck driver at a rest stop in New Jersey. They said he smelled of alcohol and that a breath test determined that he was legally drunk.

The owner of the trucking company said his driver had no prior accidents and that he had been driving big rigs for just over a year.

In many similar situations, accident injury victims and families of deceased motorists will with the help of an attorney file legal claims against both the trucker and the company that employed him.

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