WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — Five years after eight people were killed when an intoxicated mother collided head-on with an SUV on the Taconic Parkway, four lawsuits stemming from the crash have been settled, a lawyer said.
The terms of the settlements are confidential, said attorney Kevin Grennan, who represented one of the victims and the only survivor.
The lawsuits were brought against the estate of Diane Schuler and against her brother, who owned the minivan she was driving. Schuler was going the wrong way on the highway. The plaintiffs were Schuler’s surviving son and the estates of her daughter and the men.
The men were killed, along with Schuler, her daughter, who was 2, and her three nieces, ages 5, 7 and 8. The lone survivor was Schuler’s son, who was 5.
Schuler was driving the red minivan home from a weekend camping trip to upstate New York on July 26, 2009, when she inexplicably drove south in the northbound lanes for nearly 2 miles of the parkway before colliding head-on with the SUV in Westchester County, police said.
An autopsy found Schuler, who drove past “Do Not Enter” signs, was intoxicated and had been smoking marijuana.
Michael Bastardi Jr., whose father and brother were killed along with a family friend, said Wednesday that the lawsuits produced no new information about the wrong-way crash.
Schuler’s husband said after the crash that the parkway’s warning signs were insufficient and that the “appropriate lanes of travel” weren’t properly marked. He insisted before her autopsy that she must have been suffering from a medical condition that would explain her actions.
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