Off-Duty Police Officer Killed in Crash on 405 Freeway in Orange County
Matt Ward, 33, a nine-year veteran of the Cypress Police Department was killed in a three-vehicle car accident on the 405 Freeway the morning of October 8, 2017. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, Ward was driving his 5-year-old son to a Boy Scouts event when another driver lost control of his vehicle and collided with a second car, which in turn hit Ward’s pickup truck causing it to ram into the center divider.
Ward’s son survived the crash with non-life-threatening injuries. However, Ward was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the second vehicle suffered major injuries and was transported to an area hospital. The cause of this tragic crash is still under investigation. No citations or arrests were reported. The California Highway Patrol has asked anyone who witnessed the collision to call 714-892-4426.
Our deepest condolences go out to everyone who knew and loved Officer Ward. He was apparently a wonderful person and respected police officer who mentored teens as part of the Explorer Program and worked as a homeless liaison officer and motorcycle officer. We are sure his loss will be felt in the community. His wife and young children will remain in our thoughts and prayers.
What Caused This Fatal Crash?
Based on this news report, it appears that one of the drivers lost control of the vehicle triggering this chain-reaction crash that left one person fatally injured and another with major injuries. At this time, it is unclear as to what caused that individual to lose control of their vehicle. There are a number of unanswered questions here.
Was the driver speeding or operating the vehicle in a callous or reckless manner? Did alcohol or drugs play a part in the crash? Was distracted driving a factor in this fatal crash? Did one of the drivers make an unsafe lane change? We trust officials are seeking eyewitnesses to help determine how or why this devastating car accident occurred.
In such cases, the at-fault driver can be held liable for the injuries and damages caused. In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, families of deceased car accident victims can file what is known as a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for damages such as medical and funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering and loss of love, care and companionship.
Injured victims can seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, cost of rehabilitative therapy and pain and suffering. An experienced Orange County car accident lawyer will be able to help injured victims and their families better understand their legal rights and options.