Drivers who manage to enter a traffic lane heading the wrong way are a frequent cause of head-on motor vehicle collisions. A recent wrong-way collision on Highway 101 in Palo Alto recently killed the wrong-way driver and caused injures to several other people.
The wrong-way driver was going south in the northbound lanes of Highway 101 when he collided with a northbound vehicle. The wrong-way vehicle immediately burst into flames, and the driver died in the fire. The driver of the northbound vehicle suffered a broken leg, lacerations and other minor injuries. Neither vehicle carried any passengers.
About twenty minutes after the collision, a person driving a BMV southbound on 101 near the Embarcadero Road slowed substantially to get a better view of the initial crash site. As he slowed, he was rear-ended by a Honda Civic. The impact caused the Civic to spin out, and it came to rest in the northbound lane. As the driver of this vehicle and his three passengers attempted to escape, a third vehicle hit the Honda and seriously injured the three passengers. The driver of the third vehicle was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving. The driver of the Honda, his three passengers, and the driver of the third vehicle were taken to a nearby hospital.
Sorting out liability for the death of the wrong-way driver and the other persons injured in this complex accident may take some time. The estate of the wrong-way driver will face claims for personal injuries from the people in the car he struck. The four people trying to escape from the Honda will no doubt explore the possibility of suing the driver who struck them and who may have been drunk. Anyone who has suffered injuries or lost a loved one in a multi-vehicle accident may wish to consult an experienced personal injury attorney for an evaluation of the evidence and estimate of the likelihood of recovering damages for medical expenses, lost income and pain and suffering.