The Santa Cruz police are looking for any reports of reckless driving leading up to the car accident that killed a local cyclist. The accident happened on Wednesday, October 25. A young man in a 2006 Audi A4 reportedly hit the cyclist from behind. The man was thrown from his bike and killed on the scene.
While the police are stressing that the accident was not a hit-and-run, they are considering the possibility that reckless driving may be to blame. Police are now asking the community to step forward if they witnessed any other reckless activity leading up to the bicycle crash.
What Exactly is Reckless Driving?
Reckless driving is a serious crime that involves a driver who acts in a way that shows a clear disregard for the rules of the road and the safety of others. While there is no single activity that necessarily constitutes this crime, courts have seen all the following as examples of reckless behavior:
- Speeding excessively in a way that engagers others on the road
- Ignoring red lights or stop signs
- Failing to yield when legally required to do so
- Extreme cases of distracted driving
- Endangering other by failing to turn on or replace lights
Legal Options Against a Reckless Driver
While the state of California may require jail time for a reckless driver who causes bodily harm to another person, this kind of legal action may do little to support a family struggling to pay medical bills or cope with the loss of a loved one.
To seek damages to help stay afloat after a tragedy like this, the victim or their family must make a personal injury claim. A personal injury attorney can help bring a case against a reckless driver to hold them responsible for their crime. This can help victims to get the support they need to pay expenses, make up for lost wages, cover legal fees and stay on their feet through these difficult times.
Of course, the police have not yet determined the guilt or innocence of this young man, but the accident should serve as a reminder that we should drive with respect and caution for others on the road. All it takes is a few moments of carelessness or poor judgment to cost someone their life.
Frederick M. Dudek is a San Diego personal injury lawyer and cycling enthusiast who fights passionately on behalf of his fellow cyclists.