Three people were injured, one seriously, after a car plowed into a crowded restaurant in Perris the afternoon of November 24, 2013. According to a news report on CBS Los Angeles, the injury crash occurred at the Sol y Mar Mexican Grill in the 2900 block of Perris Boulevard. One diner suffered major injuries and two others who were hit suffered minor to moderate injuries. All three were transported to the hospital. Police say the 19-year-old driver, later identified as Mario Balverde, was trying to leave the parking lot when he lost control of the vehicle. He was arrested and booked on suspicion of felony DUI resulting in injuries.
My thoughts and prayers are with those who were injured in this incident. I wish them all the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.
Riverside County Crash Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol's 2010 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were six fatalities and 141 injuries involving car accidents in Perris. In Riverside County as a whole, 190 people died and 7,632 were injured in traffic accidents during the same year. Also, in 2010, 69 fatalities and 930 injuries were reported due to DUI collisions in Riverside County.
Laws and Liability Issues
Based on this news report, it appears that the driver of the vehicle was under the influence and lost control. According to California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a): "It is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle."
In such cases, at-fault drivers, in addition to criminal charges, can also be held civilly liable for the injuries and damages they cause. Injured victims would be well advised to contact an experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer who will fight for their rights and ensure that the at-fault parties are held liable. A knowledgeable car accident lawyer will also be able to advise victims about how their own car insurance policy might apply to an incident where the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured.