Kenneth Elmore, 41, of Bakersfield, suffered major injuries in a Rosedale motorcycle accident on October 30, 2008 after another motorist turned in front of him. According to this news report in the Bakersfield Californian, 22-year-old Jesus Solano was driving a 1985 Porsche northbound on Fruitvale Avenue when he made a left turn onto westbound Downing Avenue. He struck Elmore, who was riding his 2002 Suzuki southbound on Fruitvale. Elmore braked, but his motorcycle hit Solano’s car, ejecting him from the motorcycle and over the car. California Highway Patrol officials said Elmore was taken to an area hospital in critical condition after the 10/30/08 crash, while Solano was uninjured.
It is indeed a relief that Elmore has survived this horrific motorcycle accident. I wish him the very best for a quick and complete recovery.
California Vehicle Code Section 21801 (a) states: “The driver of a vehicle intending to turn to the left or to complete a U-turn upon a highway, or to turn left into a public or private property, or an alley, shall yield the right of way to all vehicles approaching from the opposite direction which are close enough to constitute a hazard at any time during the turning movement.” The same section also states that the driver attempting to make the left or U-turn must continue to yield right of way to approaching vehicles until such a turn may be made with reasonable safety.
Based on the newspaper’s account of this accident, I’d bet that Solano, was at fault for failing to yield right of way to through traffic and to Elmore. Solano probably did not see the motorcyclist, which is common in these types of collisions. I’m sure traffic investigators will also look into whether Solano was operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
There is no question Kenneth Elmore will have substantial rights to compensation if the investigation reveals that Solano was at fault. Elmore would be well-advised to consult with an experienced California motorcycle accident attorney, who will help determine who or what caused this accident and who should be held accountable for it. A skilled personal injury lawyer will also be able to look into whether there were other causes such as a dangerous condition on the roadway or a dangerous intersection. If such a condition exists, that might point to some liability on the part of the government agency that maintains the roadway or intersection.