Mark Botros, 21, was killed and another motorcyclist was injured in a Westminster car accident after they collided with a car the afternoon of April 11 at an intersection. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, the fatal crash occurred at the intersection of Springdale Street and Camphor Avenue. Two motorcyclists apparently collided with a vehicle. Based on their initial investigation, police believe that the motorcyclists were traveling south on Springdale when they struck the vehicle, which was making a left turn from Camphor onto Springdale.
Both were hospitalized. Botros died from his injuries while the other motorcyclist is reported to be in critical but stable condition. The driver of the vehicle was treated at the scene. No citations or arrests were reported and officials do not believe that alcohol or drugs were involved. Traffic investigators are looking into who had the right of way.
My heartfelt condolences go out to the family members and friends of Mark Botros for their tragic loss. I also wish the injured motorcyclist the very best for a quick and full recovery.
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2011 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), one fatality and 30 injuries were reported as a result of motorcycle accidents in Westminster. In Orange County as a whole, 18 people died and 796 were injured due to motorcycle accidents during the same year.
Laws Relating to Left Turns
Based on this news report, it appears that the driver of the car struck the motorcyclists as he or she was making a left turn. Drivers who are making left or U-turns are required under the law to yield the right-of-way to oncoming vehicles. A number of motorcycle accident occur in such scenarios because drivers fail to see oncoming motorcycles.
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.”
Fault and Liability
If the driver in this case is determined to have been at fault, he or she can be held liable for the victims’ injuries, damages and losses. Injured victims in such cases can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, rehabilitation, permanent injury, pain and suffering and emotional distress. Families of deceased crash victims can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for lost future income, medical expenses, funeral costs and pain and suffering. An experienced Westminster personal injury lawyer will be able to advised victims and families regarding their legal rights and options.