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Police are still investigating the tragic crash that claimed two lives in Queens in the early morning of Feb. 18. New York authorities have still not determined what caused the fatal single-car accident. As of this writing, they have been tight-lipped about possible factors that may have influenced the crash, including alcohol or unsafe speed.

The two victims, who have so far not been publicly identified by police, were traveling west on the Long Island Expressway around 1 a.m. when the accident occurred. Apparently, the vehicle suddenly left the road before turning on its side and striking a tree head-on. Emergency medical personnel arriving at the scene declared both the driver and passenger dead.

Police have not confirmed whether either individual was properly restrained at the time of the accident, and it is unknown whether next-of-kin have been made aware of the fatalities. Police have also not speculated as to a possible cause for the vehicle leaving the road, though the investigation is still underway as of this report. No other vehicles appear to have been involved in the accident.

Because the driver of the vehicle died with the passenger in this car accident, no criminal charges will result from the police investigation. However, if New York police determine the driver negligently lost control of the vehicle, it may be possible for the family of the passenger to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver’s estate and any separate owned of the vehicle that crashed. A suit of this type would be handled via a civil court proceeding.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, 2 killed in NYC auto accident, No author, Feb. 18, 2014