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Roadway Debris Causes Fatal San Bernardino County Crash


Monrovia resident William McGrath, 56, was killed in a San Bernardino County car accident involving a vehicle rollover. According to a news report in The San Bernardino County Sun, the fatal rollover accident occurred on the 15 Freeway south of Calico Road in Yermo the morning of August 8, 2012. Officials say McGrath swerved to avoid debris on the roadway before his 2007 Toyota Avalon went out of control and flipped over. McGrath was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. It is unclear from the report what kind of debris caused the crash or if the authorities knew of the hazardous conditions.

My heartfelt condolences go out to the family and friends of William McGrath following this tragic car accident. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

San Bernardino Car Accident Statistics

According to California Highway Patrol’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), 83 fatalities and 1,704 injuries occurred as a result of car accidents in the unincorporated potions of San Bernardino County. During that same year, 223 people were killed and 7,870 were injured as a result of car crashes countywide.

What Caused This Fatal Accident?

Based on this news report, his vehicle flipped over when he tried to avoid some type of debris on the roadway. California law prohibits anyone from throwing or dumping debris on the highway. California Vehicle Code section 23112 (a) states: “No person shall throw or deposit, nor shall the registered owner or the driver, if such owner is not then present in the vehicle, aid or abet in the throwing or depositing upon any highway any bottle, can, garbage, glass, nail, offal, paper, wire, any substance likely to injure or damage traffic using the highway, or any noisome, nauseous, or offensive matter of any kind.”

Liability Issues

I trust officials are looking into who was responsible for dropping the debris on the roadway. In such cases, the at-fault party can be held liable for the injuries, damages and losses. The family of a deceased victim of a highway debris auto accident has a right to be compensated for their losses not only by the person responsible for the debris on the roadway, but also by the “uninsured/underinsured motorist” provision of their own car insurance policy.

If the person responsible for the debris on the highway is never identified or found, the uninsured motorist coverage of an auto insurance policy can provide compensation for the injured victim or the family of a deceased car accident victim. A knowledgeable San Bernardino County personal injury lawyer will be able to better advise victims or their families about how their auto insurance policy applies to a roadway debris accident.

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