A San Diego car accident severely injured a motorcyclist, who crashed into an SUV that was making a U-turn. According to a news report in U-T San Diego, the motorcycle accident occurred on South Coast Highway 101, near Santa Fe Drive, in Encinitas, the afternoon of February 18, 2012. Officials say the rider was traveling south when a Nissan Pathfinder SUV made a U-turn in front of the motorcycle. The victim’s injuries have been listed as serious, but they are not considered life threatening. It is not clear if the driver will be cited for the crash.
My thoughts and prayers are with the injured victim of this San Diego accident. I wish the victim the very best for a complete and speedy recovery.
San Diego Motorcycle Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were no fatalities, but 11 injuries reported due to motorcycle accidents in Encinitas. During that same year, San Diego County motorcycle accidents caused 39 fatalities and injured 989 people.
The Law Relating to U-turns
Based on this news report, the driver of the SUV was making a U-turn at the time of the crash. 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 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, and shall continue to yield the right-of-way to the approaching vehicles until the left turn or U-turn can be made with reasonable safety.”
In this particular case, if the driver is determined to have been at fault, then, he or she can be held liable for the injuries and damages caused. Injured victims can seek compensation to cover damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, cost of hospitalization, rehabilitation and other related expenses. An experienced San Diego personal injury lawyer can help determine whether a dangerous or defective roadway caused or contributed to the incident. If that was the case, the city or governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can also be held liable. Under California Government Code Section 911.2, any personal injury claim against a governmental agency must be filed within 180 days of the incident.