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San Diego Personal Injury Attorney Blog

Rage may be a factor in Spring Valley motorcycle fatal

Driver distraction is getting to be one of the biggest concerns related to traffic safety. So many accidents happen because the driver of a vehicle has his or her mind on things other than the task at hand. The result can be that someone is seriously hurt or killed. Pain and suffering can only follow.

The consequences can be particularly devastating if the accident involves a motorcycle. Chances are better than even that the person or persons on the motorcycle will suffer the worst.  

Here's a question for you. What comes to your mind when you hear the phrase distracted driving? 

Could fatal Ca. bus-truck crash lead to new safety measures?

If safety recommendations the National Transportation Safety Board has been pushing for had only been in use, some lives might have been saved in that deadly crash last week in Orland, California. That at least seems to be the suggestion behind comments from the chief NTSB official investigating the tragedy.

Few are likely unaware of the horrific situation. Officials say ten people were killed and more than a dozen others were injured Friday when a double-trailer FedEx truck veered across a wide median on Interstate 5 and slammed head-on into a coach bus carrying a group of students and chaperones making a spring trip to Humboldt State University.   

Authorities confirm that the accident killed five students, three adult chaperones and the drivers of both the bus and the truck. What is still undetermined is just what the circumstances were that led to the fiery crash. Was it driver or company negligence?

Days after dog attacks, question of ownership remains

If someone in San Diego becomes the victim of a vicious attack by a dog, the owner of that dog should not be surprised if action is taken to hold them accountable. The damage that an animal attack can do is not limited to the physical injuries that can be inflicted. There can be significant emotional trauma, as well.

The cost of the therapies that may be required and the time it takes to recover can be staggering. Seeking compensation is a victim's right. Obtaining it may be trickier, especially if you aren't working with an experienced attorney.

The difficulties that can be associated with trying to hold a dog's owner responsible for an animal attack is apparent in a case that took place earlier this month in the Bay Terraces neighborhood. Maybe you saw the news reports about it.

Rescued-at-sea baby and family back in San Diego

Lots of eyes are likely turned to San Diego today. That's because a young family is coming home after an at-sea rescue this week. According to the California Air National Guard commander who was the first to get the mayday call, rescuers reached the family just in time, saving the life of a sick baby girl.

The parents of the 1-year-old child, who also happen to have another daughter, age 3, have come in for some pretty harsh criticism from around the world because of these events. A lot of people have blasted the parents for deciding to undertake an around-the-world voyage with such small children.

But Eric and Charlotte Kaufman are not withering under the scrutiny. 

Mystery in Stockton motorcycle death has victim's family upset

The California Highway Patrol insists there is nothing to claims that a Stockton man's motorcycle death might have been caused by a CHP patrol officer. At the same time, there are a lot of questions surrounding the circumstances of the death and the victim's family says authorities haven't been very transparent in sharing whatever they know.

Not surprisingly, the relatives are upset. There is no apparent wrongful death claim being made at this point, but that could come. A lot may depend on the results of the official investigation. In situations such as this, the time to be speaking with an attorney would be now.

Skydiver's death may be case of not taking every precaution

A veteran of more than 1,000 skydiving jumps died over the weekend in San Diego. The owner of the skydiving company where the man worked says the man might be alive today if he had not opted to make his last jump without the benefit of a computer chip device that would have opened his parachute automatically in an emergency.

At this point, an emergency appears to be exactly what this 27-year-old man suffered. Officials are still investigating, but the owner of the skydiving company says the victim was jumping with a group and, at one point, he collided with another jumper. The owner says the man may have suffered a brain injury that rendered him unconscious.

No jail time for father and son in elder abuse death conviction

Prosecutors did not get what they wanted. Elder care reform advocates are upset, too. The source of the disappointment is a judge's decision to sentence the father and son operators of a Vista, California, assisted living facility to four years of probation after they were convicted of causing the death of an 85-year-old resident by neglect.

Resident Frank Kiser died at Bonair Rest Home in 2010. His body was reportedly covered with bedsores, a condition that can develop if a bedridden individual's body isn't frequently repositioned by caregivers.

The son had pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the case, and the owner of the facility had been found guilty by a jury of felony elder abuse. 

Loved ones say felony charge proper for fatal motorcycle crash

The loved ones of 37-year-old Darin Steffey say they are seeking justice for his unnecessary and untimely death. They say they got a start on that score last week when a judge ordered the woman accused of killing him to stand trial for gross vehicular manslaughter.

In the wake of the hearing in El Cajon, Steffey's girlfriend told reporters that the felony charge is what she and members of Steffey's family had been hoping for. She said she has lost the person she expected to spend the rest of her life with and she continues to deal with excruciating pain every day as a result. She says her own life has been taken away from her.

Which GM should be liable for accidents due to faulty switches?

There are some 1.6 million General Motors cars on the road that may have faulty ignition switches in them. We're sure some of them must be cruising around San Diego. The company says the faulty switches can suddenly turn the motor of the car off, even as it is underway, creating a hazard. A recall has been announced and fixes are expected to begin starting next month.

What is not clear is how many vehicle accidents may have already resulted because of the defect, but current GM CEO Mary Barra acknowledged this week that it is believed that at least 12 people have died. She says the company is conducting an internal investigation and cooperating with federal authorities in trying to get to the bottom of things.

When it comes to distracted driving in CA, map apps not included

The issue of driver distraction is a big one in California and the rest of the country. Nearly every state has some sort of law on the books aimed at curbing cellphone use. The scope of restrictions may vary, but the focus tends to be on limiting cellphone chatting or texting.

The rationale for such laws is apparent. If someone is too busy talking or texting on the phone, they're not focused on the road. When drivers get reckless and distracted, the potential for a car accident that leaves someone severely injured or killed is high. Those responsible should expect to be held accountable.

But, as a California appeals court recently ruled, restrictions on cellphones does not apply to using the map function on smartphones while behind the wheel.

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