Paul Tapalla, 22, of Montclair, was killed in an Irvine motorcycle accident after crashing into a tree.
According to a news report in The Orange County Register, the fatal crash occurred the night of March 17, 2014 near Main Street and Paseo Westpark.
Police say the motorcycle seemed to have lost control and hit a sign and a tree. No other vehicles seemed to have been involved, police said.
However, officials are still looking into what caused Tapalla to lose control of his motorcycle. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The Irvine Police Department’s major accident investigation team is investigating the crash.
I offer my deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Paul Tapalla for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2011 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were no fatalities but 59 injuries reported as a result of motorcycle accidents in the city of Irvine.
In Orange County as a whole, 18 people died and 796 were injured as a result of motorcycle accidents during the same year.
What Caused This Fatal Crash?
Based on this news report, it appears that the motorcyclist suddenly lost control and crashed. Officials have not mentioned that excessive speed or rider impairment was a cause.
There are several unanswered questions here. What caused the motorcyclist to lose control? Were there other vehicles involved? Was there a vehicle defect or mechanical malfunction in the motorcycle that may have caused the rider to lose control? Was the accident the result of a faulty motorcycle part? Was there a dangerous or defective condition on the roadway, which may have caused or contributed to the incident?
I trust officials are looking into these and other issues in order to determine precisely what occurred here and why.
If a defective motorcycle or motorcycle part caused the accident, the manufacturer of the motorcycle or the faulty part can be held liable. If a dangerous or defective roadway caused the crash, the city or governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can also be held liable.
In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, families of deceased victims can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for damages such as medical and funeral costs, lost future income and loss of love and companionship.
Also, any personal injury or wrongful death claim against a governmental entity must be filed within 180 days of the accident or injury.
An experienced Irvine motorcycle accident lawyer will be able to better advise injured victims and their families about their legal rights and options.