HOUSTON COUNTY, Ala.— A Newville woman was killed Feb. 16 in a two-vehicle crash on U.S. Route 431 near Dothan that left several others injured.
Local authorities identified the decedent as Teresa Melvin, a 57-year-old who was traveling in the rear seat of a passenger vehicle that struck a Ford Mustang driven by Donald Gleen of Dothan.
When the accident occurred, the Mustang was stopped in the roadway for reasons that have not yet been determined.
Melvin was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. Glenn and at least two other people involved in the accident suffered injuries, but they are reportedly expected to recover.
An investigation into the accident is ongoing. No additional information was immediately available.
Commentary on the fatal accident in Alabama that killed Teresa Melvin
Folks will look at this accident and conclude Ms. Melvin is an unfortunate victim of a serious accident. When a driver rear-ends another vehicle, blame is almost always put on the rear-ending vehicle without consideration of the other vehicle’s actions. This is a mistake, especially when we have reports that the other car was stopped in a public roadway.
The focus of this accident relates to Mr. Green’s acts. What caused his vehicle to stop in the middle of the roadway, and was this cause preventable? If the car stopped because of traffic, no investigation would be needed to answer this question. However, the reports indicate no basis for the stop has been determined, suggesting Mr. Green stopped due to mechanical failure, medical emergency, or negligence. Each alternative must be investigated thoroughly to ensure the Melvin family receives the answers surrounding Teresa’s death.
Another consideration worth exploring is the seatbelt’s function during the accident. The first step in this process would be determining if seatbelts were being used. If they were, I find it alarming the rear occupant was killed when the front occupants were not. I would be interested in examining the rear seatbelt to determine whether or not it functioned properly at the point of collision.
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