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California 2-vehicle collision leaves 1 dead, 1 injured

Authorities report that a fatal car accident in Santa Cruz County claimed the life of one motorist and left another severely injured. The accident took place during the afternoon hours of March 28 close to the north side entryway of the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Highway officials say that the collision occurred around 2 p.m. as a 44-year-old man who was heading northbound in a 1991 Ford F-150 on Empire Grade Road collided with a southbound 2001 Chevrolet van as the man, who was traveling at high speed, suddenly veered over into her lane. The man instantly died from the injuries he suffered in the crash.

First responders to the scene transported the driver of the van, a 20-year-old woman, via a medical helicopter to a nearby trauma center where she was treated for major injuries, as reported. The woman was allegedly not speeding at the time of the crash, and the roadway was clearly marked with double solid lines, according to the California Highway Patrol. It was not reported if any of the drivers had on their seat belts.

Negligent drivers who cause an accident in which another driver is injured may be held responsible for their actions if the injured party succeeds in a personal injury claim. Negligent driving includes speeding, reckless driving and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For such cases to be successful, an experienced personal injury attorney would have to substantiate the plaintiff's claims that the driver's negligence caused the crash. Information from police reports and eyewitness accounts may help support the claim of negligence. In instances where the defendant died in the crash, the suit would have to be filed against his or her estate. Compensation may cover the plaintiff's medical expenses, income losses and property damages. In some cases, the award may include non-economic losses such as pain and suffering.

Source: Santa Cruz Patch, "Coroner IDs Man Who Died In Saturday Crash In Santa Cruz County," Susan Schena, March 30, 2015

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