Steven Olson, 46, of Newport Beach was killed in a car crash after he lost control of his SUV. According to a news report in The Daily Pilot, the fatal crash occurred the afternoon of June 24, 2013 on the 55 Freeway near Paularino Avenue in Costa Mesa. California Highway Patrol officials say his Jeep Grand Cherokee went off the freeway and crashed into a tree. The Jeep hit a shoulder on the freeway before heading over the asphalt curb and then down an embankment where it struck a pine tree. Olson died at the scene. It is not known how fast he was traveling at the time. The investigation is ongoing.
There were four fatalities and 752 injuries reported in Costa Mesa as a result of car accidents in 2010, according to CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS). In Orange County as a whole, 100 people died and 13,368 were injured due to car crashes during the same year.
What Caused This Crash?
Based on this news report, it is unclear as to how or why this fatal accident occurred. There are still several unanswered questions here. Why did Olson lose control of the SUV? Was there a vehicle defect or mechanical malfunction in the Jeep SUV that may have caused or contributed to the incident? Were any other vehicles involved in this crash? Was there a dangerous condition on the roadway, which caused or contributed to the crash? I trust officials are looking into these and other issues in order to determine precisely what occurred here and why.
If a defective auto or vehicle part caused the crash, then, the automaker or manufacturer of the faulty part can be held liable for the victim’s wrongful death. If a dangerous roadway condition caused the crash, then, the governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can be held accountable. Any personal injury or wrongful death claim against a governmental agency must be properly filed within 180 days of the incident. An experienced Orange County personal injury lawyer will be able to advise families of deceased victims better understand their legal rights and options.