October 17, 2012—San Diego, CA—An 87-year-old woman is dead following a two-vehicle accident on Wednesday near Mission Bay Park, according to UT San Diego News.
Authorities say that a 26-year-old woman who has not yet been identified pulled out of the Hilton San Diego Resort and Spa onto East Mission Bay Drive about noon when a white Peugeot driven by the 87-year-old victim was approaching. The two cars collided, and the older victim was taken to the hospital with serious injuries to her upper leg. She died at the hospital. The younger woman was also taken to the hospital complaining of abdominal pain.
My thoughts and prayers are with the victim’s family at this tragic time.
San Diego Accident Statistics
The California Highway Patrol reports that approximately 260 people are killed and 19,000 injured in car accidents in San Diego County each year. The majority of those killed and injured are drivers, with 140 deaths and 12,000 injuries on average each year for drivers of vehicles. Other victims include passengers in the car and pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorcyclists outside the vehicle.
Is This Accident as Clear-Cut As It Seems?
Sometimes car accident fault can be clearly assigned to one driver or another. In this case, police feel confident that the younger driver made an illegal turn into traffic and precipitated this accident. However, that does not mean that the other driver did not also bear fault for the accident. In California, the principle of comparative liability applies. For example, in the present case, if it could be shown that the victim was speeding at the time of the accident, the amount of money her family could collect in a lawsuit for damages might be reduced. California courts allow juries to consider the relative fault of each person involved in an accident and assign a percentage of the “blame” to each one. This percentage determines what portion of an eventual settlement the victim can recover.
Liability Issues in this Case
It is likely that the young driver will bear full responsibility for this accident. If so, the victim’s family could file a claim for damages including loss of love and affection, medical and funeral bills, and other expenses. A professional California wrongful death lawyer who handles car accident lawsuits should examine the facts of this case to determine the best way to help the family collect these damages.