Fatal NYEE Crash in Chula Vista
Investigators believe that the driver’s excessive speed caused a fatal crash on New Years Eve Eve 2023.
The driver was heading south on I-805 around 10:25 a.m. when, for unknown reasons, she slammed into a concrete wall on the overpass and crashed through a guardrail, sending her SUV plunging onto the street below, authorities said.
Emergency crews found the vehicle on East Naples Street near Nacion Avenue. The driver died before she could be taken to a hospital. Her passenger, who was also 60, suffered major injuries. Both victims are from Anaheim, said California Highway Patrol Officer Salvador Castro.
Castro said a toxicology report will be done by the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office to determine if alcohol or drugs were a factor in the fatal crash.
Speed and Vehicle Collisions
Excessive velocity is a primary or contributing factor in about a third of the fatal car crashes in California. Speed multiplies the risk of a collision as well as the force in a wreck.
Drivers cannot instantly stop moving vehicles. First, they must see a hazard. Next, they must move a foot from the accelerator to the brake. Then, they must bring the vehicle to a safe stop.
This process only takes about a second, if an alert driver is watching the road and the brakes are in good working order. In those few moments, a car traveling 30mph advances six car lengths. At 60mph, stopping distance multiplies to eighteen car lengths.
The “ifs” mentioned above could lengthen stopping distance and create additional legal issues for a Carlsbad car accident lawyer. For example, poor owner maintenance or a manufacturing defect could cause non-working brakes.
Additionally, speed multiples the force in a collision between two objects, according to Newton’s Second Law of Motion. This law doesn’t just apply to an apple falling from a tree. Speed basically transforms a non-injury fender-bender into a serious or fatal injury collision. Additionally, in a high-speed wreck, small objects in a vehicle, like cell phones, become high-speed projectiles.
Curves and speed are an especially dangerous combination. Usually, speeding drivers oversteer into curves. Fast-moving vehicles are much more sensitive to steering changes than slow-moving vehicles. Then, when drivers over-correct to stay on the road, they lose control of their vehicles.
This discussion takes on a different meaning in passenger injury cases. Legally, injured passengers have the same rights as injured drivers. However, mostly for emotional and financial reasons, many injured passengers don’t exercise their rights.
Usually, injured passengers have close personal relationships with injured drivers, and they don’t want to “blame” a driver for an “accident.” This sentiment is understandable but misplaced.
Civil claims don’t blame anyone for anything. Instead, civil claims force tortfeasors to accept responsibility for the mistakes they make. In a perfect world, we’d voluntarily accept responsibility for our mistakes and lawyers would be unnecessary. But we don’t live in a perfect world.
Additionally, most car crashes aren’t accidents. People accidentally leave the oven on. They don’t accidentally speed down a highway, lose control of their vehicles, and seriously injure a passenger in a crash.
These sentiments are especially strong if a passenger’s health insurance company paid most of the medical bills. This point goes back to responsibility. The tortfeasor, not an insurance company, should accept responsibility. A victim shouldn’t pay a dime out of pocket, even for a copay or a higher insurance rate, if another person’s negligence caused injury.
Additionally, injured passengers also need and deserve compensation for lost wages, property damage, emotional distress, and other injuries health insurance benefits don’t cover.
Count on a Hard-Working San Diego County Lawyer
Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Oceanside, contact the Pursley Law Firm. The sooner you reach out to us, the sooner we start fighting for you.