Law increases penalty for failure to yield to right of way after teen killed

Elena Zamora
(Photo: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Elena Zamora Memorial Act will be enacted Thursday in a ceremonial bill signing by Governor Bill Haslam.

The act, named after Humfe-Fogg High School student Elena Zamora, will increase the penalty for failure to yield the right of way resulting in death.

Elena Zamora
(Photo: WKRN)

It will become a Class A misdemeanor with a penalty of a $2,500 fine and a possible 11 months and 29 days in jail.

It also increases the penalties for causing serious injury.

The Elena Zamora Memorial Act came about after she was hit and killed by a semi in a busy intersection of downtown Nashville in December 2013.

She had the walk signal as she crossed the street but was hit by the truck as it turned right. The driver had a clean light and did not see the teenager.

Elena Zamora
(Photo: Submitted)

The semi driver was ultimately charged with failure to yield and paid a $500 fine. He did not lose his license.

Representative Beck said, “We have to do all that we can to prevent senseless deaths like Elena’s from occurring. Hopefully this will help act as a deterrent.”

The bill signing ceremony will take place in the War Memorial Auditorium beginning at 10:45 a.m.

RELATED: 17-year-old girl hit by semi, killed in downtown Nashville
Legislation aims to increase penalties for pedestrian deaths, injuries

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