A man who died in a fatal crash in Sonoma County has been identified. Carlos Del Pozo, 58, of Sebastopol was killed in a traffic collision that caused his car to spin out of control on U.S. 101 South, just north of the College Avenue offramp.
According to California Highway Patrol, Del Pozo was driving a Nissan Versa south in the number three lane on U.S. 101 when a Chrysler 300 sedan, traveling south in the number two lane, spun out of its lane and hit the other vehicle.
The collision caused the Nissan to spin out of control into a guardrail to the right before continuing down an embankment at the College Avenue offramp. Del Pozo was pronounced dead at the scene. The other driver, a 31-year-old Santa Rosa man, was uninjured.
The accident remains under investigation, according to CHP.
Distracted driving and negligence
Distracted driving happens when the attention of the driver is taken away from the activity of driving, whether it is glancing at or writing a text, adjusting mirrors, talking on a cell phone or playing music. And the potential of causing or getting into an accident becomes higher the greater the speed of the vehicle, as there is less time for the driver to respond to errors.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has stated that when a driver sends or reads a text while going 55 miles per hour, it is like driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed.
Distracted driving can be negligent, but it must be proved. In order to prove that a distracted driver was negligent, the plaintiff must show that the defendant had a duty of care to the victim, that there was a breach of that duty and that this was the actual or proximate cause of the damages.
Negligence claims in California
California recognizes comparative negligence in a personal injury claim. This means that the injured party can sue for damages even if they were partly responsible for the accident. They may file a claim for the percentage of responsibility that is attributable to the defendant.
If you or a loved one has been in a car accident that was caused by another driver’s negligence, it is essential to have an aggressive and passionate legal representation to pursue insurance claims and, if necessary, go to court to obtain the maximum financial compensation for your injuries.