Texas sees its fair share of accidents in which a vehicle goes off the roadway and crashes into a building. The people inside the home or business sometimes escape serious injury due to being protected by the structure. In one recent incident, however, circumstances took a twist that resulted in serious personal injuries to the occupants and may have raised insurance issues.
On Saturday afternoon, April 7, a 40-year-old man lost command of his vehicle and crashed into a private home in Hurst, which is about 12 miles northeast of Fort Worth. The Hurst Police Department reported that the vehicle severed a gas line inside the home, causing an explosion that rattled the whole house and brought neighbors outside. The three inhabitants were a couple and their minor son.
The mother suffered extensive burns and was listed in critical condition. The father and the son were also burned but not as seriously, according to news reports. Two police officers attempting to assist the family reportedly suffered minor injuries. The police arrested the driver for traffic violations, but it is uncertain whether they intend other charges.
The driver was negligent and probably even reckless for leaving the road, losing control and going into the home. A driver must always have sufficient control of the vehicle. One must always keep a lookout ahead and have sufficient control to prevent a collision from occurring. In this case, the driver's liability auto policy will provide coverage to the injured parties according to its liability limits.
There may be coverage for property damage separate from personal injury. In addition, the injured residents may have to look to their homeowners' policy for reparations, but there may be an exclusion in the policy. Since they were not operating a vehicle, it is uncertain whether they can turn to their underinsured motorists' coverage in their auto policy, if they are in fact insured. The answers to these insurance issues will depend on the provisions of applicable Texas laws that can be best answered by consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the accident.
Source: msn.com, "Car slams into Texas home, triggering gas explosion and injuring 5 people", Travis Fedschun, April 8, 2018