On Tuesday, a 23-year-old motorcycle driver died after being in a collision of State Street in Salt Lake City, UT. The crash occurred on Saturday June 16, 2018 around noon time.
Marcos Villagrana, the motorcycle rider, was driving down State Street in South Salt Lake when an SUV made a U-turn in front of him. Unable to stop, Villagrana crashed into the back of the SUV. The injuries sustained in the crash were life threatening to the motorcycle driver.
The article reported that the motorcycle driver was not wearing a helmet. However, there was no mention of whether or not the driver of the SUV wearing their seatbelt. Why is it important that the article mentions that the motorcycle driver was wearing a helmet or not?
The crash is still under investigation.
In Utah the law will provide a remedy for the motorcycle rider—let's look at the possibilities.
First—was the U-turn restricted? The law states that a driver cannot make a U-turn
(1)As used in this section, “railroad grade crossing” means the area between the passive or active warning signs where a railroad track and roadway intersect.
(2)The operator of a vehicle may not make a U-turn or turn the vehicle to proceed in the opposite direction:(a)unless the movement can be made safely and without interfering with other traffic;(b)on any curve, or upon the approach to, or near the crest of a grade, if the vehicle is not visible at a distance of 500 feet by the operator of any other vehicle approaching from either direction; and(c)on a railroad track or railroad grade crossing.(3)A violation of Subsection (2) is an infraction.
What Happens Next?
Long story short—if the SUV did not make the turn where permitted or is such a manner that he or she interfered with other traffic or made unsafely he or she should be found liable for the crash.
Second—what if the motorcycle rider was speeding. If the motorcyclist was speeding he may be found partly responsible for the crash. In Utah, if a jury finds the plaintiff 50% or more at fault he will receive no monetary compensation. In order to determine speed this crash needs investigation by an accident reconstructionist or a forensic engineer.
Third—even if you win the fight against the SUV's insurance company, the SUV driver may have limited insurance coverage. Perhaps the SUV driver only has $25,000 in coverage and the motorcyclist has lost his life. Regardless of the loss, all that the family will get for the loss of their loved one is $25,000. This holds true unless the SUV driver has what we call “judgment assets.” Judgment assets are those beyond the insurance coverage that may be seized after a verdict to satisfy (pay) the judgment (award by the jury).
We are here to give you the support that you need through a motorcycle accident. Call us if you feel like you need assistance at (801) 590-9825.
Utah Bike Law and its attorneys are licensed to practice law only in the State of Utah and maintain offices in Salt Lake City, Utah. No attorney client relationship is established by simply visiting this website.