THE LAW OFFICES OF STEVEN A. ELIAA San Diego, Ca Professional Corporation Founded on Excellence & Ethics

Who Is at Fault in a Motorcycle Lane Splitting Accident in California?

If you’ve been injured in such an accident, should you be compensated?

Read on as personal injury attorney, Steven Elia, sorts it out for you.

Have you ever sat in traffic and watched a motorcycle whiz by between lanes? That’s called lane splitting and, while it’s not technically legal in San Diego or anywhere in the state of California, it’s completed accepted.

San Diego lane splitting attorney

What happens if an accident occurs while a motorcycle is lane splitting? Who is at fault?

This is a muddy area in the state of California and one that should involve the professional advice of a California personal injury attorney. But let’s see if we can shed some light on it here.

Lane splitting accidents are quite common, especially here in Southern California, including San Diego, where traffic can be a real headache. These accidents happen because of the close proximity of cars to the passing motorcycle. There is very little space to maneuver, and many drivers simply don’t anticipate that a motorcycle might be passing them by.

When a lane splitting accident happens, the fault is usually attributed to the motorcycle rider, but this is dependent on what the insurance adjuster and court find.

Is the DUI conviction enough to prove the drunk driver is at fault?

You’re in an accident. The other driver was drunk and subsequently convicted of a DUI charge. Is he/she at fault? Is your case a slam dunk?

Establishing proof is an important part of both civil and criminal cases, but as any attorney will tell you, proving your case is easier said than done. When there is the concurrence of both civil and criminal litigation surrounding the same case, however, criminal charges can weigh heavily on the outcome of a civil lawsuit and speed up the judgment and settlement to the benefit of the plaintiff. Here’s how.

A serious accident can put your life on hold.

What It Takes to Win a Criminal Case

In a criminal trial, the prosecution is required to prove that the defendant committed an act beyond a reasonable doubt. This means that when presented with a body of evidence, a guilty verdict is handed down because no reasonable doubt exists based on the facts.

Drunk felon, no seat belt, no driver’s license, no insurance, and he was speeding, but we win $800K for him.

How did we do it? And why?

On March 15, 2015, we settled a motor vehicle roll-over accident that occurred in El Cajon, CA.  In this case, our client’s blood alcohol was more than double the legal limit in California, methamphetamine was found in his system, two open forty ounce bottles of beer were found in his car, and he had no drivers license or insurance at the time of the crash.  We did however manage to find a way to obtain compensation for our client.

But wait there’s more – the defense accident reconstructionist opined our client was driving over 70mph in a 40mph zone.  He had been “partying” all night long and was leaving a liquor store at 9:00 AM when the accident occurred.

El Cajon auto accident

Texting and Driving Accidents Are on the Rise. Social Media to the Rescue?

Scientific studies conducted over the last few years are suggesting that texting and driving is as dangerous as severe intoxication is to driving. Back in 2009, Virginia Tech released a study that texting and driving increased the likelihood of an accident by twenty-three times compared to driving with no distractions. That means texting and driving is six times as dangerous as driving with a BAC of .08.

Right now, texting and driving causes fewer deaths than drunk driving, but with how fast people are buying cellular and smart phones, and how necessary they’re becoming to daily life, it’s only a matter of time before texting and driving accidents overtake them – UNLESS we nip the trend in the bud.

texting and driving accident

Uber Safe Experiment Could Save Lives

Don’t drink and drive would be a lot easier with these all over San Diego

On May 16th, two young women were killed in a wrong-way DUI car acccident on SR-163 in the Mission Valley area. Sadly, the driver was repeatedly warned by his friends not to get behind the wheel. While it still requires personal committment to drive safe, perhaps Uber has the answer.

Back in April, Uber planted a kiosk in downtown Toronto, Canada. About as tall as an ATM and half as wide, Uber Safe has a screen, a breathalyzer, and a straw dispenser. Insert a straw into the breathalyzer and blow for five seconds to get your BAC measured. If you’re over the legal limit (0.08, just like California) the machine arranges for an Uber driver to pick you up and deliver you home. The cost? Absolutely free. See Uber’s demo video after the jump.

San Francisco Cornerback Chris Culliver Arrested for Hit and Run Reckless Driving

San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver has been arrested on suspicion of felony hit and run reckless driving after he drove into a bicyclist and left the scene.

Culliver was driving a white Ford Mustang around 10:30 a.m. Friday morning when he hit a cyclist near downtown San Jose, said city police spokesman Albert Morales. Luckily, the bicyclist wasn’t seriously injured. A witness followed Culliver, 25, and had his car driven into by Culliver. The vehicle blocked the suspect’s car until police arrived to arrest him.

Double Car Accidents in La Jolla Kills 1, Injures 2

One person was killed Friday, two people were hurt, following a series of car accidents in La Jolla.

Officials say the accidents happened in the early afternoon, when a 58-year-old man lost control of his 1993 Mercedes-Benz sedan in the 6500 block of La Jolla Scenic Drive. The man careened into a newer model Mercedes, then continued on and hit a light post.

Drunk Driver Kills U.S. Marine Motorcyclist in Horrific Accident

Another U.S. Marine of California was the victim of a collision with a drunk driver Tuesday morning.

Fremont police Officer Alan Zambonin wrote a statement indicating that 23-year-old Alexander Yohn of Emeryville refused to be given a ride after downing whiskeys and bar-hopping on Monday night.

Around 1 a.m. Tuesday morning, a Taco Bell employee called police after Yohn had made a disturbance in the drive-thru. Officer Steven Nordseth spotted him driving a Mini Cooper in the opposite direction on Fremont Boulevard. The driver failed to yield after Nordseth tried to stop him. Yohn then ran a red light at Decoto Road where he collided with motorcyclist Andrew Silva, a 23-year-old lance corporal whom had only just returned from Afghanistan in February. The suspect crashed the car into a utility pole and caught the car on fire. Yohn ran to a nearby field where Nordseth was able to catch him to take him into custody.

Andrew Silva died at the scene. His family (wife and two year old son) only had him home from Afghanistan for a month before the tragedy.

Yohn, a self-described heroine addict and alcoholic listed his occupation as an emergency medical technician. According to his records, he also has a prior drunken-driving conviction from Minnesota. Yohn was charged with murder, vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and hit-and-run; all counts were felonies.  He is in jail without bail. To prove 2nd degree murder the government must confirm implied malice. Murder charges were filed since Yohn failed to yield to Officer Nordseth’s attempt to pull him over and intentionally ran a red light thereafter.

A fund has been set up for Silva’s family. Contributions can be sent to the Andrew Silva Memorial account, Fremont Bank, P.O. Box 8170, Fremont, CA 94537-8170.

It is shuttering to know that one of our nation’s heroes has fallen victim on his own soil, to his own drunken countryman. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury or was even killed from a collision where another driver is at fault, call the Law Offices of Steven A. Elia to represent you and your family. Their expertise in Personal Injury Law has recouped damages and medical expenses for many cases just like yours. Call (619) 444-2244 right now for your free consultation.

Woman Stands Trial for Felony Gross Vehicular Manslaughter

A judge ruled this week that a San Diego County woman must stand trial on a charge of gross vehicular manslaughter, stemming from a head-on car crash that killed a U.S. Forest Service firefighter.

22-year-old Natashia Wood  is accused of causing the deadly accident on a curvy part of Buckman Springs Road October 3rd around 6:15 p.m. Officials say Wood was driving her roommate’s Dodge Durango SUV southbound on the two-lane road when she drifted onto the shoulder and then over-corrected left putting her in the path of the oncoming firefighter’s motorcycle.

Landscaper Struck by Car While Leaf Blowing – Pedestrian Accident in Poway

A landscaper was severely injured (pedestrian accident) after being struck by a car in Poway Tuesday morning. The accident occurred around 8:42 a.m. on Twin Peaks Road, west of Maple Street.

The sheriff’s department believes the landscaper was wearing earplugs at the time of the accident and may not have heard the car coming.

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The Law Offices of Steven A. Elia, APC

2221 Camino Del Rio S, Ste. 207, San Diego, CA 92108

(619) 444-2244