Matthew Wills, 24, sustained fatal injuries in a Riverside car accident after he was struck by a vehicle the night of March 22, 2010. According to a news report, Willis was riding a 2007 Yamaha south on Canyon Crest Drive, near Via Vista Drive, when the driver of a Nissan Altima made a left turn in front of the motorcycle. The motorcycle hit the left front side of the Nissan, ejecting Wills. He was transported in critical condition to a nearby hospital where he died shortly after the crash. Officials say Wills was wearing his helmet. The driver of the Nissan, only identified as a 49-year-old Riverside resident, was not injured.
View Larger Map
My heart goes out to everybody who knew and loved Matthew Wills for their tragic and devastating loss. I offer my deepest condolences to his family and friends. Please keep them in your prayers.
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2008 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were three fatalities and 96 injuries as a result of motorcycle accidents in Riverside. In Riverside County as a whole, 32 deaths and 581 injuries were reported involving motorcycle accident in 2008.
Dangerous Left Turns
Based on this news report, it appears that the driver of the Nissan Altima may have turned in front of the motorcyclist. 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.”
A majority of motorcycle accidents take place when another vehicle turns left or makes a U-turn in front of them. Very often, these vehicles do not look out for a motorcycle at an intersection or when they are attempting to make a turn. They watch for larger vehicles, but at times, fail to see motorcycles, bicycles and pedestrians. Such inattentiveness can have disastrous consequences. I trust officials are also investigating whether the driver of the Nissan was intoxicated, distracted, speeding or otherwise negligent at the time of the crash.
Claim for Compensation
Victims’ families in such cases would be well-advised to retain the services of an experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer who will stay on top of the official investigation and make sure that their legal rights and best interests are protected. A knowledgeable car accident lawyer will also be able to determine whether there was a dangerous condition on the roadway, which may have caused or contributed to this fatal motorcycle accident. If that was the case, the city or governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway could also be held liable. Please remember that any such claim against a governmental agency in California must be filed within 180 days of the accident or injury.
The Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys is not representing any of the parties mentioned in this article at the time the article was posted. Our information source is cited in the article. If you were involved in this incident or a similar incident and have questions as to your rights and options, call us or another reputable law firm. Do not act solely upon the information provided herein. Get a consultation. The best law firms will provide a free consultation. We provide a free, confidential consultation to not at fault persons named in this article. The free consultation offer extends to family members as well.