It’s always tragic when suspected DUI accidents make news headlines in San Diego. Sadly, there are drivers who still erroneously believe they are above the law. Worse, many of these same individuals believe they can actual drive safely even though they are intoxicated. Of course, the truth is that NO ONE is above the law and NO ONE is capable of driving safely when they are driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Recently, NBC 7 San Diego (5/16/2015) reported on another tragic accident that was caused by a suspected drunken driver. The accident occurred on San Diego State Route 163 after the suspected DUI driver drove the wrong way. Sadly, the driver crashed head-on into another vehicle resulting in catastrophic injury and death.
Reports indicate the accident occurred just after 1:30 a.m. on Route 163 near the I-8 overpass in Mission Valley. The California Highway Patrol said that the driver in question was headed the wrong way on the SR-163 while flashing his hazard lights. Moments later, that same driver collided head-first into another vehicle, killing two of the five individuals inside the vehicle. Those who survived the accident were reported to have sustained serious injury.
According to reports, it appears that the driver in question survived the accident.
Several days following the incident, the California Highway Patrol confirmed the driver in question was indeed arrested and booked on suspicion of driving under the influence.
Witnesses of the crash described the scene of the accident as “utter chaos” according to San Diego NBC News 7.
Sadly, this is the second wrong-way crash in San Diego in just two weeks. Earlier this month, another driver suspected of drunk driving drove the wrong way on I-15 near Mira Mesa Boulevard and crashed head-on into a vehicle carrying a family of five, reports indicate. Two people in that crash tragically died.
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU SPOT A WRONG WAY DRIVER
It’s one of the scariest thoughts: You’re driving on the freeway, late at night, and you spot headlights coming right at you. It’s anyone’s worst nightmare. When you know what to do though, the thought – or even the experience itself – will be scary but hopefully not as hopeless or daunting. Here’s what you can do if you spot a wrong-way driver.
PULL OVER TO THE RIGHT
Wrong way and often drunk drivers enter the freeway in the opposite direction and then they proceed to drive all the way to their right, thinking it’s the slow lane. In fact, in the correct direction, that same lane is the fast lane. If you spot a wrong way driver, pull over to the right hand side of the road as soon as possible and as soon as it’s safe for you to do so. When traveling during late hours of the night, you may want to drive in the middle or slow lanes as well. Avoid the fast lane.
CALL 9-11 ASAP
When you’re pulled over, call 9-11 right away and report the wrong way driver. Every second counts, so call as soon as you can!
IF YOU SEE A WRONG WAY DRIVER ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE OF THE FREEWAY, ALERT OTHER DRIVERS
You should alert people when you spot a wrong way driver on the opposite side of the freeway. Honk you horn, use your flashers and pull over to the right to call 9-11 as soon as possible.
WHEN TRAVELING ON A RURAL ROAD
The only option in many cases is to swerve into the shoulder as soon as you spot the wrong way driver. If there is no shoulder or an embankment, your only other option is to swerve out of the direction of the wrong way driver and into the next available lane. Sometimes, that lane may be the lane of opposing traffic. If you must swerve into an opposing lane and you see it is free to do so, get back to your own lane as soon as possible. Cases like these are extremely perilous and we hope that no San Diegan ever has to be put in a situation facing a wrong-way driver on any road much less a rural one where safety options are limited.
CONSIDER ALTERNATE DRIVING TIMES
Many times, wrong way drivers are also drunk drivers. Usually, drunk driving occurs in the late night to early morning hours. If possible, avoid roadway travel during those times and opt for driving the following morning.
WRONG WAY CAR ACCIDENTS
If you have been injured in a San Diego wrong way accident, or if a loved one of yours has passed away due to a wrong way collision, you may be entitled to financial compensation. It’s important to speak to a personal injury attorney right away to ensure all of your legal rights are preserved. Call us today at 1-858-551-2090 for a FREE CONSULTATION and speak with San Diego’s most trusted law firm group specializing in car accident representation.
SENIOR PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY & FIRM FOUNDER
Michael Pines is a former insurance company attorney who graduated from the University of California Hastings College of the Law in 1987. While he was an insurance attorney, he learned from behind the scenes how insurance companies work and how they decide how much to pay injured people. Now that he works against insurance companies, Michael’s inside knowledge has resulted in significant benefits to his clients injured in car accidents. Learn more about Michael Pines