When a Car Runs a Light and Kills Someone, It’s Not an Accident (Updated, 8:05 A.M.)

Maybe the message that calling fatal crashes “accidents” that are  caused by negligence, distracted driving, DUI or some other form of negligence is finally catching on.

If you missed the news, yesterday three youths in a speeding BMW ran a red light, killed a pedestrian, caused a school bus to flip over and fled the scene.  The juvenile delinquents were caught by a construction crew and the three are now in a hospital being treated for injuries.  While researching the crash, I was surprised to see that most media outlets were reporting this horrific crash as just that, a crash, and not an “accident.”

Granted, the phrase “School Bus Crash” implies that the bus driver, and not the speeding youths, were at fault; but the absence of the word “accident,” at least in the headlines, is a good development.

But don’t worry, there is still plenty if shoddy headline writing on the crash.  Unfortunately, much of it is from the government.  Both The Source and the Mayor’s twitter account refer to the crash as an “accident” in their headlines.

The Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times

You can see more headlines after the jump.

##http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local-beat/Bus--105726353.html##KNBC##
##http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local-beat/Bus--105726353.html##KNBC##

Screen shot 2010-10-25 at 10.41.48 PM

##http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/index##KABC##
##http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/index##KABC##
##http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/##CBS2##
##http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/##CBS2##
##http://twitter.com/villaraigosa/status/28737683329##Villaraigosa's Twitter Feed##
##http://twitter.com/villaraigosa/status/28737683329##Villaraigosa's Twitter Feed##
##http://twitter.com/villaraigosa/status/28737683329##The Source##
##http://twitter.com/villaraigosa/status/28737683329##The Source##

Update: Stephen Box points out that the Times is using “accident” and “crash” interchangeably:

Screen shot 2010-10-26 at 8.05.16 AM

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