Driver Arrested for Accident Leading to Va. DOT Worker’s Injury

A driver has been arrested after causing an accident that resulted in the double leg amputation of a Department of Transportation worker.

According to a report, the incident, which occurred early in the morning off of Interstate 77 on the West Virginia side of East River Mountain Tunnel near mile 1, injured Justin Dawson, 24, of Hinton, commander of the West Virginia State Police Princeton detachment. The tunnel us operated by the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT).

Charged with Three Misdemeanors Including Reckless Driving

The driver, Mark Musselman, of Bristol, Tenn., has been charged with three misdemeanor offenses, which include failure to obey traffic control lights, improper approach of an emergency vehicle causing injury (the “move-over law”), and reckless driving, explained Senior Trooper K.A. Filer, of the West Virginia State Police Princeton detachment. The three misdemeanor charges carry a penalty of less than one year in jail.

Motorist Drove on Shoulder Upon Exiting Tunnel

“The VDOT workers were on the shoulder assisting a stranded motorist, and a driver (Musselman) that was traveling northbound came out of the tunnel,” Filer said. “Musselman drove onto the shoulder and crashed into one of the workers and a VDOT truck.” It is unclear as to why he was driving on the shoulder of the road.

Upon incident, Dawson was transported to a local hospital before being flown to a medical facility in Charleston. Both of his legs had to be amputated due to the injuries that he sustained in the crash.

Case Appears to be Pretty Cut and Dry

Filer explained that Musselman had been completely over the rumble strips, and that his skid marks show that he was on the shoulder of the road immediately upon coming out of the tunnel; he was on the shoulder significantly prior to where the exit starts.. “No one set out to kill or injure someone,” said Filer. “But you have to take responsibility. People just don’t pay attention while they’re driving.”

The Driver Faces Consequences

Musselman was arraigned before Mercer County Magistrate Susan Honker and was given a $5,000 cash only bond. He had a bond-reduction hearing before Mercer County Magistrate William Holroyd immediately afterward. At this second hearing, his bond was changed from $5,000 cash only, to personal recognizance (an acknowledgment that an individual owes a personal debt to the state). He was released on his own recognizance following that hearing.

What Can You Do?

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, it is important that you seek a knowledgeable and experienced personal injury attorney with automotive experience. At Surovell Isaacs & Levy, PLC, we help our clients to get what it is that they deserve. To speak with our attorneys and set up a consultation, call us at 703-420-4772 today. We serve clients throughout Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia.


Posted in: Car Accident