A teenage driver is dead and five of his passengers are in the hospital following a single-car crash in San Diego, according to local sources. The car accident occurred during the night of Jan. 7 according to the California Highway Patrol, on Highway 905 near San Diego. Police are still in the process of determining the cause of the accident, and so far they have not ruled out intoxication, recklessness or negligence on the part of the driver.
According to the limited information in the report, it appears the driver, whose age was not released by California authorities, was headed westbound on Highway 905 east of Interstate 5 around 9:15 p.m. when the accident occurred. It appears that, for reasons unknown, the vehicle left the roadway and struck the rail on the side of the road. The driver, who was not wearing a seat belt at the time, was ejected from the car and pronounced dead at the scene.
The other five occupants of the vehicle, aged 15 to 19, were all injured. At least two of them required extrication from the vehicle by emergency services. All five were taken to local hospitals with varying injuries, none of which were elaborated upon in the report. The California Highway Patrol noted the driver may have been operating the vehicle illegally as drivers under the age of 18 are not allowed to drive other minors without an adult in the vehicle.
Should it be determined that the underage driver of the vehicle is materially responsible for this car accident, the families of the injured parties have legal recourse available to them. Under California law, they may be entitled to pursue personal injury lawsuits in civil court against the driver’s estate and the registered owner of the vehicle he was driving. Such a suit requires evidence of the driver’s negligence, which can be sourced from the police investigation or other gathered evidence.