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Upstate New York tragedy raises limo safety concerns

The worst transportation accident in almost a decade happened in upstate New York recently when 20 people died in a limousine crash. The accident was the worst tragedy that did not involve an airplane since 2005, when a bus carrying elderly people caught fire.

Obviously, there be a lot more investigation in to what caused this terrible accident. While it appears that the limousine driver did not successfully navigate a T-intersection and went in to a parking lot instead, it wasn't clear whether the driver made a mistake or the vehicle failed. In any event, 2 pedestrians and all the occupants of the limo died in the accident.

State authorities indicated that the vehicle had failed an inspection recently and really should not have been on the road at all. Moreover, the driver of the vehicle did not have the right credentials to legally operate the limousine. Regulators have already taken action against the limo company, revoking its authority to operate in New York.

Some of the problems with these vehicles, according to some experts, relate to the way in which they are designed. To create a stretch limousine like the one involved in this accident, a designer has to divide an existing vehicle in two and then insert an additional segment, much like placing a leaf in a table.

While it lends to the unique look of a long limousine, this sort of change in a vehicle's intended design can make the limo hard to control and, if it is involved in an accident, highly prone to crumpling or falling apart altogether. Moreover, these sorts of changes may mean that riders in the back are not provided seatbelts.

In any event, victims of limo accidents, whether they are passengers, pedestrians or occupants of another vehicle involved, may have several different avenues of legal recovery available to them. One step is usually to make a personal injury or wrongful death claim against the responsible parties.

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