Five-Year-Old Daughter Died When The Driver Fell Asleep At The Wheel

A driver who gets behind the wheel while they are tired can be just as dangerous as one who is driving under the influence or distracted.  Researchers have shown that drivers who are asleep are much more likely to get into an accident.

According to a story reported on the AZ Family website, investigators believe that the death of a five-year-old girl in Rimrock may have been caused because her mother may have been under the influence of drugs and fallen asleep at the wheel.

A spokesperson for the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Department said that on the afternoon of Monday, February 17th, the woman crashed her Chevy Suburban into a pickup truck on Cornville Road, north of Interstate 17.  The woman was reported to have had her five-year-old daughter with her at the time of the crash. The little girl was not in a child safety seat.

Emergency crews arrived at the scene and had to extricate the woman, her daughter, and the 37-year-old driver of the pickup truck from their vehicles.  The mother and driver of the pickup truck were taken to Flagstaff Medical Center for treatment while the little girl was transported to Verde Valley Medical Center and then transported by helicopter to Phoenix Children’s Hospital.  She was later pronounced dead by doctors and removed from life support.

According to the Dwight D’Evelyn with the YCSO, eyewitnesses say that the Suburban was seen weaving in and out of traffic and crossed the center line before the fatal crash. The woman told sheriff’s deputies that she had taken pain pills and medical marijuana before the accident and that she believed that she might have dozed off.

Investigators are still trying to determine whether the woman was impaired at the time of the crash. At the time of the report on Thursday, no charges had been filed.

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