One man died and a San Diego teenager was critically injured in a car accident on March 18, according to KSWB-TV. Matthew Leonardo, 30, was driving his Ford Escort on the wrong side of State Route 52 at approximately 9:30 p.m. and collided with a minivan traveling in the opposite direction. Will Cunningham was driving the minivan, and his wife and three daughters were passengers. Leonardo was pronounced dead at the scene and the family riding in the minivan was rushed to the hospital.
Cunningham is the head basketball coach at Cathedral Catholic High School. One of his daughters, Taylor, was in critical condition following the collision. Taylor was selected as San Diego’s Outstanding Teen in the 2013 Miss San Diego Pageant. Cathedral Catholic held a mass on March 19 for the Cunningham family.
This particular stretch of State Route 52 has developed a notorious reputation for deadly collisions such as this one. Another fatal accident on New Year’s Eve also involved a head-on collision with a car driving on the wrong side of the road. In 2010, a San Diego police officer was killed while pursuing a driver traveling in the wrong direction on this road as well.
The latest accident remains under investigation and authorities did not officially speculate as to the cause.
“Most of our wrong ways on the freeway are [attributed] to alcohol,” said California Highway Patrol officer Jacob Sanchez.
The multiple deadly accidents involving a similar pattern of wrong way behavior warrants a thorough examination of the roadway. Officials should take any possible action to prevent such accidents in the future.
If you sustained catastrophic injuries or a loved one was killed in a car accident, contact our firm to schedule a free consultation. There may be a number of parties whose negligence contributed to your accident, and you and your loved ones deserve the benefit of a thorough investigation.
Dudek Law Firm, APC—San Diego car accident attorney