Darren Kritzberger, a body shop worker, and his dog, were killed when an out-of-control SUV careened off a freeway in Beaumont and slammed into his business. According to a CBS Los Angeles news report, the SUV also crashed into a motor home and other cars the morning of July 19. Police said the driver of a silver Subaru SUV lost control of his vehicle going westbound on the 10 Freeway in Beaumont.
Speed Played a Part
After the car careened off the freeway, the driver crossed an intersection 5th Street and Beaumont Avenue at a high rate of speed, jumped a curb and then slammed into an auto body shop killing Kritzberger, an employee at the shop, who was outside working on cars. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver of the SUV, a woman, suffered relatively minor injuries. Someone from a nearby store attempted to give Kritzberger CPR almost immediately but it was too late. Firefighters reported that the woman was going at 90 mph when she lost control. It is not clear if alcohol or drugs were factors in the crash. Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of Darren Kritzberger for their terrible loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Based on this news report, it appears that the woman may have lost control of her SUV because of excessive speed. California Vehicle Code Section 22350 (Basic Speed Law) states: “No person shall drive a vehicle upon a highway at a speed greater than is reasonable or prudent having due regard for weather, visibility, the traffic and on surface and width of, the highway, and in no event at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property.”
Causes and Compensation Issues
However, we trust officials are also looking into other factors that may have played a role. Was the driver under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs? Was there a vehicle defect or mechanical malfunction that might have caused the SUV to accelerate beyond control? It is important that the vehicle be carefully examined by an accident reconstruction expert in such cases in order to determine precisely what caused the crash.
Families of accident victims, especially in cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault party seeking compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering, and loss of love, care and companionship. An experienced Riverside County car accident lawyer will be able to advise families regarding their legal rights and options.