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Kenneth S. v. Motorist

Kenneth S. v. Motorist


Kenneth S. was on his daily commute from his home in Riverside to his work in Santa Fe Springs, California. Due to traffic congestion, Kenneth S. was riding a 2014 Harley-Davidson motorcycle westbound between the Number One Lane in the High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane of the SR-91 Riverside Freeway in the city of Corona. At that time and place, a solo motorist in a Ford F-350 Utility Pick-Up Truck, in the Number One Lane of the westbound SR-91 Riverside Freeway just ahead and to the right of Kenneth S. travelling in the westbound HOV Lane of the SR-91 Riverside Freeway. As Kenneth S. was legally lane sharing, traffic to his right began to suddenly slow due to the merging westbound lanes. Due to his excess speed, unsafe vehicle distance and/or inattention, the motorist was unable to safely slow and, instead, made the election, decision and choice to suddenly and without warning or turn indicator turn his Ford F-350 Utility Truck to the left, across the broken white lines and into the HOV Lane and Mr. Smith on his motorcycle.

The Injuries

The collision caused Kenneth S. to be ejected from his motorcycle and strike the asphalt roadway. Kenneth S. sustained multiple injuries as a result of the accident.

The case

After the collision, a California Highway Patrol officer arrived to conduct a Traffic Collision Investigation. Based on the statements of the parties and physical evidence the Area of Impact (AOI) was in the HOV Lane, 10 feet north of the south roadway edge of the westbound SR-91 Riverside highway. In other words, the motorist turned the Ford F-350 Utility Truck, across the broken white lines and 2 feet into the HOV Lane. However the motorist’s insurance company denied liability claiming that only after the collision, the motorist “may have slid to the left slightly”. The California Vehicle Code §22107 states: “No person shall turn a vehicle from a direct course or move right or left upon a roadway until such movement can be made with reasonable safety and then only after the giving of the appropriate signal in a the manner provided in this chapter in the event any other vehicle may be affected by the movement.”

The Result

Motorcycle lawyer Tom Reinecke obtained a $350,000.00 policy limits result for Kennth S. “After a significant amount of litigation, discovery and depositions, I was successful in proving liability against the defendant driver and in obtaining an award of over $350,000.00 for our client, Mr. Ken Smith. After all was said and done, Ken was very happy with the outcome.” Tom Reinecke