Waterford Man Killed in Motorcycle Accident
A Waterford man was killed in a recent motorcycle accident. The crash occurred shortly after 7:00 p.m. along the Oakdale-Waterford Highway and Rice Road. A Denair woman was stopped for a stop sign at the intersection and was preparing to make a left turn on the highway. At the same time, a man was riding a 2006 Suzuki motorcycle north on the roadway when the Denair woman’s SUV pulled out into his path. The motorcycle and the vehicle collided, causing the SUV to catch fire. The woman was able to exit her car on her own and was treated at a Modesto hospital for moderate injuries. Sadly, the motorcycle rider was pronounced deceased at the scene. Officials have identified the biker as 38-year-old Thomas Butler of Waterford. I would like to send my healing thoughts and prayers to the loved ones of Mr. Butler during this difficult time.
Why Do Motorcycle Accidents Happen?
Motorcycle accidents can occur for a wide array of reasons. Such crashes are often preventable and occur due to the negligent or reckless actions of another driver. This may include failure to yield the right of way to bikers and not checking for motorcycle riders who are lane splitting. When a motorcycle crash is caused by the negligence of another motorist, the injured biker may be able to seek compensation for the damages and injuries they may have suffered.
Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Little stands between a motorcycle rider’s body and the pavement. As a result, a biker can suffer a wide array of injuries in a motorcycle accident. These include spinal cord injury, disfigurement, cervical sprain, traumatic brain injury, or even wrongful death in some extreme cases.
Damages and Compensation in a Motorcycle Accident Case
Motorcycle riders who are injured in an accident caused by a negligent driver can claim compensation for their damages. These include reimbursement of medical bills, wage loss, and pain and suffering. Conversely, surviving family members are also entitled to seek compensation for any wrongful death damages. Recovery for economic damages includes end-of-life medical care, funeral expenses, lost inheritance, and loss of future financial support. Noneconomic damages are intangible harms such as emotional suffering, mental anguish, and loss of the decedent’s assistance, protection, love, moral support, and society. Punitive damages are awarded in a wrongful death case if egregious conduct is involved, such as drunk driving.
Who Can File a California Wrongful Death Claim?
Only specific people can bring a wrongful death claim. Under California Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.60, the children, domestic partner, or spouse of the decedent may be eligible to file a claim. When such individuals do not exist, then it is possible for dependents to bring a claim. This includes the decedent’s parents, putative spouse, stepchildren, and the putative spouse’s children. These parties must be able to prove that they were financially dependent on the deceased for at least 50 percent. For more information on who can bring a wrongful death case, watch the below video.
How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Claim?
When you are preparing to bring a claim for wrongful death, you need to know that you have a specific amount of time to do so. This is known as the statute of limitations. For wrongful death, there is a two-year window to file a claim. If government entity negligence is involved, the deadline is shortened to 6 months or 180 days from the date of the accident.
Do I Need an Attorney?
Injuries from a motorcycle accident may often lead to the death of a loved one. If the loss was caused by the negligence of another driver, a personal injury lawyer in Modesto can help. An attorney understands the emotional and financial hardships involved in losing a family member and will work diligently to obtain the compensation a family needs to move forward from their loss.
Modesto Personal Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Modesto personal injury lawyer. Bikers often depend on the cautious driving of others to keep themselves out of harm’s way. When others are careless while driving, motorcycle riders can get hurt or killed. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a motorcycle accident caused by the fault of another, please call me at (209) 227-1931 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.
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