Gabariel Koffah Jr., 26 of Newark, was killed in a New Jersey tractor trailer accident on the turnpike in Linden, according to a news report in The Star-Ledger. Koffah was a passenger in the back seat of a Toyota Avalon traveling southbound on the turnpike. The car’s driver, 25-year-old Ralph Austin, lost control of the car, struck a guardrail and then crashed into the fuel tank of a big rig driven by 59-year-old Gary Poland. Austin’s car spun and crashed into the guide rail. Austin was injured but his life is not in danger, officials said. Another man, 23-year-old Angel Rodriguez, escaped with minor injuries. Poland was uninjured.
Austin has been charged with reckless driving and driving under the influence of alcohol for causing the serious DUI accident in New Jersey. Police also apparently charged him with drug possession after they found marijuana on him. The accident is still under investigation and officials have not said whether Austin will be charged with vehicular manslaughter.
It is illegal in New Jersey to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you have been injured because of the negligence of a drunk driver or someone operating under the influence of recreational or prescription drugs, they can be held responsible for the accident or injuries. You may be entitled to compensation to cover medical expenses, loss of wages, pain and suffering and emotional distress. Please contact an experienced New Jersey auto accident lawyer at Lependorf & Silverstein to schedule your free consultation and case evaluation.