Last Monday, September 25, 2017, shortly after 10:00 am, on the 210 Freeway in Rancho Cucamonga, a multi-car accident resulted in a freeway closure for several hours. Impatient motorists were at their wits end and began trying to extricate themselves from the Sig Alert by driving on freeway shoulders and even driving the wrong way on ramps and roads as reported in the Daily Bulletin. At the same time the California Highway Patrol was attempting to ease traffic with traffic diversions and re-routes, all while trying to clear the road and complete an investigation.
The most troubling bit of the story, as reported by G. Wesson of PE.com, was that the driver of the fourth car in the crash suffered a fatal injury. The driver was reported to not have been wearing a seat belt, and the force of the collision threw him into the back of his SUV, resulting in traumatic head injuries. Tragically, he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Tragedies that occur on Southern California roadways is nothing new to residents in the Inland Empire, but it is slowly changing. This change is evident by traffic patterns, traffic patterns and the number of motorist sharing the road. The change is slow because, despite major freeway expansions in highly congested areas, traffic still seems to build and causes not only delays, but stress and traffic collisions.
While the death of the Colton resident in that fourth car may have been a result of him not wearing a seat belt, that was the secondary cause, the primary being the accident itself. In California, after a traffic accident and fatality, the California Highway Patrol can notify the California DMV of the incident, the parties involved and the details. The DMV may then choose to suspend or revoke the driving privilege of one or all parties involved through what is known as an Administrative Proceeding. The top level classification in these fatality hearings is known as “Negligent Operator”. This has nothing to do with courts and does not hold the risk of jail time. The DMV is legally bound to ensure the safety of all California motorists and will do so through education and administrative suspensions.
News recap by Rob Collier. Rob Collier is the Founder and President of California Drivers Advocates, an Administrative Advocacy Firm dedicated to defending and protecting the ability of California drivers to maintain their license when the DMV is attempting to suspend or revoke it. Rob and his team of administrative advocates assist drivers when the DMV has classified them as negligent operators and specifically at DMV Fatality Hearings. California Drivers Advocates has also set up an information/resource site to educate California drivers about their rights and responsibilities when the DMV has targeted them. You can view the website here: http://www.californiadmvhearings.info/.