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31
AUG
2010

Santa Rosa Injury Lawyers | Electric Motorcycle Designer Killed in Crash

electric motorcycle
An electric motorcycle designed by Matt Dieckmann. (Photo courtesy ClutchandChrome.com)

A 29-year-old Santa Rosa entrepreneur whose passion was developing electric motorcycles was killed while riding one of his prototypes in his hometown on Monday.

The fatal motorcycle accident occurred at 10:40 a.m., according to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, when Matthew Deickmann collided with a Toyota Prius driven by 71-year-old Gilbert Dorame, also of Santa Rosa, at a major intersection near the Coddington Mall.

Authorites have not yet determined who was at fault in the deadly crash, according to Santa Rosa Police Sgt. Doug Schlief.

Dieckmann was riding one of his Electric Racing Bikes east on West Steele Lane as he approached Range Avenue; Dorame was heading west on the same street. Witnesses said the light was green for both drivers as they approached the intersection from opposite directions, according to the Press Democrat report.

At that point, what happened is not known for sure. The Clutch and Chrome motorcycle enthusiast website points out that there have been conflicting media reports. Some reports, such as the Press Democrat, state that Dorame had already started to make a left turn onto Range Avenue and was in the intersection when Dieckmann crashed into the passenger side of the Prius. Other reports, such as ABC Channel 7 News, state that Dorame turned left into the path of the motorcycle.

Dieckmann died at the scene. Dorame was not injured.

Police closed the intersection for about five hours and are continuing to investigate the accident. Schlief said neither alcohol nor speeding was a factor.

The spot where Dieckmann was killed is about a mile from the street where his mother was killed in 2007 in a bicycle accident. A recycling truck driver turned into her path and struck her, police said. She was 47.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

30
AUG
2010

Los Angeles Injury Lawyers | Gary Busey Plays Good Samaritan at Car Accident

(Photo: Wikipedia | Creative Commons)
(Photo: Wikipedia | Creative Commons)

“Lethal Weapon” star Gary Busey — who suffered a skull fracture and traumatic brain injury in a 1988 motorcycle accident in which he was not wearing a helmet — dropped his wild-man image last week and came to the rescue at a car accident in Malibu, California.

Malibu police said Busey witnessed two cars colliding on Pacific Coast Highway and rushed to help, according to TMZ and many other sources. The Oscar-nominated actor (“The Buddy Holly Story,” 1978) immediately jumped into the role of Good Samaritan, aiding an injured man and getting an onlooker to call 911 (listen to the call below).

Then Busey helped to slow traffic to keep the people involved in the accident out of harm’s way from oncoming vehicles. He stayed with the injured victim until paramedics arrived to treat him. 

Listen to the 911 call, courtesy of TMZ:

What to do if you witness a car accident:

  • Immediately call 911. Do not try to do anything else until you make this call.
  • Pull over to the right when it is safe and stop your vehicle.
  • Stay out of harm’s way. Do not get out of your car unless you are sure it is safe to do so.
  • If someone appears to be injured and it is safe to get out of your car and to approach the victims, let them know help is on the way.
  • Do not move the victims. Moving an injured person can turn a minor injury into a serious one.
  • When authorities arrive, give them your name and contact information.
  • Make notes about what you personally saw in case you are called upon later to provide information.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving traumatic brain injury.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

30
AUG
2010

Riverside Motorcycle Accident Lawyers | Carpool Lane Cutoff Causes Fatal Crash

MotorcycleCrashA 59-year-old motorcyclist was killed Saturday after a car cut him off to try to get into the carpool lane in Moreno Valley, California.

The fatal motorcycle accident occurred at around 2:45 p.m. on Saturday on on westbound Highway 60, also known as the Moreno Valley Freeway. Albert Jackson Welch of Moreno Valley was riding a 1990 Harley Davidson Ultra Classic in the carpool lane when a 1999 Daewoo Leganza traveling about 50 mph crossed over the double yellow lines into the carpool lane directly in front of the motorcyclist, according to a Southwest Riverside News Network report.

CHP spokeswoman Sylvia Vargas said Welch applied the brakes, but the front tire of his motorcycle struck the left rear portion of car’s bumper. He was thrown off of his motorcycle and onto the highway. Paramedics rushed him to Riverside County Regional Medical Center, but his injuries proved to be fatal. Hospital officials pronounced the motorcyclist dead at 1:41 p.m. 

According to the CHP, the Daewoo that cut off the motorcyclist to get into the carpool lane was driven by 38-year-old Stephanie A. Clation, also a Moreno Valley resident. She may be charged with misdemeanor manslaughter, according to a report in the Desert Sun.

Around half of all fatal motorcycle crashes involve a collision with another vehicle, according to the latest National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data. In those crashes, 78 percent of motorcycles involved were struck from the front.

The greatest number of motorcycle fatalities occur in Florida (530 deaths per year), California (495 deaths per year) and Texas (375 deaths per year).

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

30
AUG
2010

Salinas Truck Accident Lawyers | Unsafe Lane Change Causes Fatal Big Rig Crash

truckA San Leandro man carrying a load of broccoli from Salinas to Oakland was killed Friday when his big rig overturned on Highway 1 near Gilroy.

The truck accident occurred just after midnight on Highway 101 at the Sargent Road overcrossing, according to reports in the Monterey County Herald and Hollister Freelance.

The 65-year-old driver, Manuel Palma, was heading northbound in a 2005 International tractor-trailer when he made an unsafe lane change. He apparently lost control of his truck, which crashed into the metal guard rail on the east side of the highway and continued to move along the guardrail.

California Highway Patrol officer Jaime Rios told the Watsonville Register-Pajaronian the driver may have over-corrected after the big rig went off the right shoulder. That caused the truck to slide across the roadway, where the cab separated from the trailer. The truck overturned and came to rest on the highway.

The driver was pronounced dead at the scene.

The wreck blocked the northbound lanes of the highway between Betabel Road and Highway 25 for more than nine hours.

“We had to take a lot of time on this because of the weight of the load,” Rios said. “All of the broccoli had to be off-loaded.”

The truck and broccoli combined weighed 80,000 pounds. It took three heavy-duty tow rigs working together to move the overturned trailer back into an upright position. Caltrans crews also had to repair the damaged guardrail before the road could again be opened.

CHP officials have not yet determined whether drugs and alcohol were involved in the fatal crash, which is still under investigation.

“For the sake of the family we want to take every measure to conduct a full investigation as to what happened,” Rios said. Anyone with information about the accident is urged to call the CHP Hollister/Gilroy office at 408-848-2324.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving motor vehicle accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

29
AUG
2010

California Accident Lawyers | CDC Says Car Wrecks Cost $99 Billion a Year

crashcostsMotor vehicle accidents cost at least $99 billion a year in medical care and productivity losses, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That’s at least $500 for every licensed driver in the United States.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says the price tag is actually more than double that — $230.6 billion — if you consider higher insurance premiums, taxes and travel delays caused by crashes, according to the Oakland Tribune.

The CDC study, published in the journal Traffic Injury Prevention, breaks down the costs for accidents in 2005, which is the latest data available, according to the CDC.

The breakdown shows costs of $70 billion a year for car crashes, $12 billion for motorcycle accidents, $10 billion for pedestrian injuries and fatalities, and $5 billion for bicycle accidents.

Dr. Grant Baldwin, director of CDC’s Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention, says the costs are “staggering.”

“Every 10 seconds, someone in the United States is treated in an emergency department for crash-related injuries, and nearly 40,000 people die from these injuries each year,” Baldwin said in a statement. “This study highlights the magnitude of the problem of crash-related injuries from a cost perspective, and the numbers are staggering.”

The cost in human lives is, of course, incalculable, but in terms of dollars, fatalities cost $58 billion, hospitalizations cost $28 billion and trips to the emergency room cost $14 billion nationwide every year.

The CDC says these costs could be significantly lowered if more states cracked down with tough laws on seatbelt usage, using cell phones while driving, and driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

California’s “click it or ticket” seatbelt campaign is one example of a safety program having a major impact on injury prevention, according to the Tribune. Nearly 96 percent of California drivers and their passengers now use seatbelts; average seat belt use nationwide is 83 percent. The state Office of Traffic Safety estimates that 1,300 lives a year have been saved by seatbelt usage in California since 2005.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving motor vehicle accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.