A female bicyclist was critically injured in a crash with a box truck on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. According to an NBC Los Angeles news report, the incident occurred early morning on October 2, 2013 near Coastline Drive. The details and circumstances of this crash are not clear. Officials are still investigating the cause of the crash.
NBC reports that this stretch of Coast Highway in Malibu has long been the subject of safety concerns among many bicyclists who share the roadway with other vehicles. The city is working on a Pacific Coast Highway Safety Study to assess road conditions, accident patterns, traffic and safety improvements. Just last month, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill requiring drivers to provide bicyclists with three feet of clearance when passing from behind. This new law goes into effect in September 2014.
My thoughts and prayers are with this injured bicyclist. I wish her the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.
Bike Crash Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2010 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were no fatalities, but 10 injuries reported due to bicycle accidents in the city of Malibu. In Los Angeles County as a whole, 25 people died and 4,201 were injured due to bicycle collisions during the same year.
What Caused This Crash?
Based on this news report, officials are still looking into the cause of this major injury crash. There are still several unanswered questions here. Was the truck driver fatigued, impaired, speeding or otherwise negligent at the time? Was the driver distracted? Did the truck driver fail to yield the right-of-way to the bicyclist? I trust officials are looking into these and other issues in order to determine precisely what occurred here and why.
If the truck driver is determined to have caused this crash, then the driver and his or her employer can be held liable for the crash. If a dangerous roadway condition caused or contributed to this incident, the city or governmental entity responsible for maintaining the roadway can also be held liable. Under California Government Code Section 911.2, any personal injury claim against a governmental entity must be filed within180 days of the incident. Injured victims would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer in order to understand their legal rights and options.