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'Fast & Furious' franchise actor Paul Walker, 40, killed in crash

Wisconsin fans of film actor Paul Walker joined others around the world in mourning the star of the popular 'Fast & Furious' franchise. The accident investigation stated that speed was a factor in the Nov. 30 crash that claimed the 40-year-old as well as the vehicle's driver, Roger Rodas, a partner in Walker's racing team. The condition of the bodies in the wreck necessitated the use of dental records in order to officially identify the two men.

The 2005 Porsche Carrera GT collided with trees and a light pole before bursting into flames in an office park 30 miles north of Hollywood. That model sold for $450,000 when it was released and had a reputation even among professional drivers for being difficult to handle. Autoweek magazine quoted one top driver as calling the vehicle "scary," with its V-10, 610-hp engine. The men departed in the car after attending a holiday toy drive for Walker's charity, Reach Out Worldwide.

One witness said that the crash of the Porsche could be heard from the site of the event. By the time people reached the crash site, the car was completely engulfed in flames and Walker and Rodas were trapped inside. Initial attempts to put out the blaze with fire extinguishers were unsuccessful, and firefighters and investigators later arrived at the scene to remove the bodies from the wreckage.

An investigation is still underway. If it is determined that the driver was at fault for the accident, Walker's family could file a lawsuit against the estate of the driver. Alternatively, since the vehicle involved in the crash was allegedly difficult to handle, both surviving families may be able to sue the auto manufacturer for a settlement to help reimburse for funeral costs and pain and suffering. Liability may best be decided in a court of law so that compensation may be appropriately arranged for damages suffered in such an accident.

Source: CNN, "'Fast & Furious' star Paul Walker killed in car crash", Alan Duke, December 02, 2013

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