DUI related crashes are not something to take lightly. They are brutal, often violent, and more often than not, fatal. Typically when alcohol or other toxins, like drugs, are mixed with driving, serious things happen. Car crashes, charges, and sometimes both happen in light of a DUI incident. When it comes to terrible accidents, the mind goes back to Oklahoma a few years back to a terrible incident that stands out in history.
It started out like any other day for the students at Oklahoma State University. It was a typical Saturday during football season, busy and full of life. It just so happened to be October 25, the day of OSU’s homecoming festivities. For many students, homecoming is an exciting day where people of all ages come together to celebrate the university and the football team.
What started out as a typical homecoming parade, ended in a tragedy that day. During the parade that morning, unsuspecting onlookers were taken off guard when a woman came crashing through an intersection that had been blocked off for the parade. She plowed into the crowd of people with her car, and the results were indescribable.
The gray car that the woman had been driving was smashed on one side, and the windshield was also shattered from the impact made. A motorcycle was crumpled and mangled after being hit by the woman’s car. There are many people injured on the scene as well, but the most haunting tragedies were the deaths that day.
Four people suffered a terrible fate when the woman sped through the crowd. There were mangled chairs, twisted blankets, water bottles everywhere, and even a broken baby stroller. The carnage was immense. The woman, who had been behind the wheel, was immediately suspected of driving under the influence. Investigators immediately tested her blood for substances, like alcohol or drugs, which might have impaired her driving.
The 25-year-old woman was arrested and remained incarcerated throughout Saturday night. Her charge? DUI. The motorcycle, which was mangled and destroyed, belonged to an officer who was working security for the parade that day. The woman struck his bike before plowing into the crowd.
The people she hit were flying in the air like a rag doll, and witnesses say they were almost thirty feet into the air on impact. Immediately, people were being treated for injuries. At least 44 different people were injured in the crash, while three adults and one boy, two years old, died. The adults passed at the scene of the horrendous crash, but the little boy died later from sustained injuries. Many of the injuries were critical.
At first, many of the news media though the crash was part of the parade. However, that view soon changed the look of panic on so many people’s faces came into view. The incident sparked a homicide investigation on the woman as well since she was responsible for so many people’s death that day.
Her father had a few things to say on the matter at hand that almost seem shocking in light of the events surrounding the crash. He claims that the woman, his daughter, has always been a timid person. She wasn’t an alcoholic, and she had even attended the homecoming festivities that Friday night. According to her boyfriend, she was home by 10 p.m. that night, but her actions seem to prove something different. Her father was afraid that the media would paint her to be a bad person, but the accident, which did involve alcohol, stands to reason.
The President of the University considered canceling the homecoming game against Kansas. However, they continued as scheduled. The university added a moment of silence before kickoff to help honor and remember those who had been a victim of the nasty crash only hours before. Many of the OSU players knelt down on the sidelines in a silent prayer of their own.
Many of the fans who attended the game that day were forced with the task of walking past that intersection to get to the stadium since the intersection was less than three blocks away. Many National Guard troops remained to keep watch while Red Cross officials and the Medical examiner’s office continued the cleanup and reporting tasks at hand.
Saturday evening left a somewhat clean intersection again, leaving the tragic event somewhat in the past. Though there were many hurts, many survived the horrible crash. For those who didn’t, the families suffered the losses greatly. The woman, responsible for the crash, has spent time in incarceration for her actions. This event will go down in history in the state of Oklahoma as one of the more tragic events.
Even though this isn’t the first tragedy to strike Oklahoma State University, it still stands as one of the worst on the list. When considering the things that are driving while intoxicated can do, it is gut wrenching and earth shattering. Not only do the drivers of these vehicles put their own life in danger, but they endanger many innocent people as well. Whether those people are driving cars or standing on the sidewalk to watch a homecoming parade doesn’t matter. What does matter is keeping the streets safe by restraining from consuming alcohol and driving.
Many states are cracking down on the DUI and DWI laws and charges. More people are being caught and punished now than ever before, and when looking back at this incident, it is no wonder. The families will suffer forever, and the woman will as well since she will always be stricken with the consequences of her reckless actions.
It is important to remember never to drink and drive. If you have been drinking, you should relinquish your keys or your right to drive. Find a ride, grab a cab, or find an Uber to take you home. It is better to be safe than be sorry, and it is better to pay a little more for a ride home than pay for your life from a fatal crash.