When a driver gets behind the wheel with passengers in tow, they have a responsibility to drive safely. When a motorist neglects that responsibility, it can put the passengers’ lives at risk. Unfortunately, that appears to be the case with a deadly car accident in Knox County recently.

A 31-year-old woman was reportedly driving recently with at least three passengers in her Subaru Impreza on Raccoon Valley Road near Ducks Way. For some reason, the vehicle left the roadway and crashed into a culvert.

Two of the passengers, ages 22 and 29, were pronounced dead at the scene. The driver and another 29-year-old passenger were airlifted to University of Tennessee Medical Center. Their injuries were apparently life-threatening, but they were listed in stable condition after being admitted, according to WBIR’s website.

No one in the car was wearing a seatbelt. After conducting a preliminary investigation, police also believe that alcohol played a role in the crash, as did speeding. Sources say charges were likely.

Unfortunately, those three factors – lack of seatbelts, consumption of alcohol and excessive speed – are a recipe for bad accidents. It’s important for drivers to be aware that their actions can affect the welfare of others. By that same token, it’s also important for passengers to trust that a driver can transport them safely.

Everyone traveling in a vehicle should be wearing a seatbelt. They can save your life, and not wearing one automatically puts you at unnecessary risk. Please drive safely.

Source: WBIR, “Charges pending in fatal weekend accident,” Oct. 31, 2011