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Roadway Debris Causes Fatal Orange County Car Accident


An Orange County car accident caused by a sofa in freeway lanes the night of September 12, 2010, resulted in fatal injuries for 30-year-old Manuel Ortiz-Torres. The Orange County Register reports that the deadly crash happened on the 5 Freeway in Orange when the driver of a Toyota Corolla hit the couch, lost control and rear-ended a 2000 GMC Safari. Ortiz-Torres, a passenger in the minivan, was killed. Officials say he was thrown from the vehicle because he was not wearing a seatbelt. The minivan’s driver was also injured. An investigation is ongoing.

I offer my heartfelt sympathies to the family members and friends of Manuel Ortiz-Torres. I also hope the driver in this case did not suffer major injuries. Please keep these victims and their families in your prayers.

Roadway Debris Accidents

Unfortunately, freeway debris is a common sight on California’s freeways. The California State Department of Transportation (Caltrans) estimates that 140,000 cubic yards of debris is dumped on California’s roadways each year. Highway debris has caused 155 California car accidents just in the last two years.

Laws and Liability Issues

In California, a motorist can be fined for dropping anything other than live bird feathers or water from his or her vehicle onto a roadway. In addition to fines, drivers can be held civilly and criminally responsible for the consequences of roadway debris. I hope that the driver who dropped the sofa on the freeway is found and held responsible – both, criminally and civilly.

Injured victims and families of deceased victims in such cases could seek compensation for their injuries, damages and losses. A knowledgeable Orange County car accident lawyer will be able to better explain the legal rights and options available to victims or their families, as well as how the uninsured/underinsured clause of their car insurance policy would apply to a roadway debris accident. The best personal injury law firms will always offer a free and comprehensive consultation to injured victims and their families.

Have you ever been involved in an accident involving roadway debris?

The Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys is not representing any of the parties mentioned in this article at the time the article was posted. Our information source is cited in the article. If you were involved in this incident or a similar incident and have questions as to your rights and options, call us or another reputable law firm. Do not act solely upon the information provided herein. Get a consultation. The best law firms will provide a free consultation. We provide a free, confidential consultation to not at fault persons named in this article. The free consultation offer extends to family members as well.

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