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Tulare County Motorcycle Accident Kills Rider


Dennis Mitchell, a 29-year-old-man died in a Visalia motorcycle accident on Goshen Avenue near Kelsey Street, according to a recent report in the Visalia Times-Delta.

The accident occurred as a pickup truck driven by Mario Tapia made a left onto Goshen, a four-lane divided road, from Recycle Depot, a facility on that road. Tapia reportedly made a safe turn ahead of another eastbound truck coming his way. Mitchell, who was believed to be doing 90 mph on his motorcycle., passed the eastbound truck on the left side and hit the rear of Tapia’s truck. Sgt. Bill Blankenship of the Visalia police department said Mitchell was killed by the impact and Tapia would most likely not be held responsible for the crash. Juan Denis and David Morrow were witnesses to the accident.

I offer my deepest condolences to the victim’s family for their tragic loss.

Accidents involving two wheelers tend to increase across the nation in the summer months, as the weather gets warmer bringing more riders on the road. California’s more conducive riding weather also results in a greater share of motorcycle accident injuries. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates there are over 4 million motorcycles registered in the United States, roughly representing two percent of all registered vehicles. The numbers estimated each year for motorcycle fatalities however, represent about five percent of all highway fatalities.

Motorcycles do have some obvious advantages for commuters but they fare badly in protecting riders in a crash. Riding a motorcycle safely takes both skill and experience and I strongly recommend all riders attend a motorcycle rider-training course. Some basic precautions include:

– A motorcyclist must rely on their helmet,
– A motorcyclist must be extra cautious at intersections – A motorcyclist must remain visible to other motorists at all times and not ride in a vehicle’s blind spot – A motorcyclist should place greater emphasis on defensive driving – A motorcyclist must be more cautious when riding in inclement weather, on slippery surfaces, or when encountering obstacles on the roadway.

Often, the cause of California motorcycle accidents are unforeseeable and beyond the control of the bike driver. A hazardous road condition or a pre-existing mechanical issue with the vehicle could have contributed to an accident. The services of an attorney experienced in investigating motorcycle crashes becomes essential for anyone who wants to understand the exact reason for the crash.

Please visit the NHTSA Web site for information on Motorcycle Safety Programs

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