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SANTA MARIA: Richard Kittle Died In Semi-Truck Accident While Riding Motorcycle By North Broadway and Preisker Lane


Jun 20, 2019

Richard Kittle Santa Maria: Richard Kittle From Louisiana Died In Santa Maria Semi-Truck Accident While Riding Motorcycle By North Broadway and Preisker Lane

SANTA MARIA, CALIFORNIA (June 20, 2019) – A 44-year-old motorcyclist identified as Richard Kittle tragically died in a semi-truck accident by the intersection of North Broadway and Preisker Lane.

Santa Maria police are saying that 44-year-old Richard Kittle from Louisiana was riding his motorcycle as a semi-truck was making a left turn. Richard Kittle was ejected from the motorcycle and sustained major injuries. 

The truck driver remained at the scene and was not injured. A witness told the police that Richard Kittle was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash. 

Firefighters and paramedics rushed to the scene in order to help the victim. Despite life-saving measures Richard Kittle died due to his injuries. 

The victim was in California in order to work. Santa Maria police are still investigating what caused the crash. 

Causes of Truck Accidents

According to the FMCSA, “Elements that influence the occurrence of a crash may take place hours, days, or months before the crash. They include driver training and experience, vehicle design and manufacture, highway condition and traffic signaling, and weather conditions. Other elements may take place immediately before a crash, such as a decision to turn in traffic, a tire blowout, or snow.” There are a number of unique factors that may contribute to a truck accident including:

  • Brake problems
  • Prescription drug use
  • Traveling too fast for conditions
  • Unfamiliarity with roadway
  • Roadway problems
  • Over-the-counter drug use
  • Inadequate surveillance
  • Fatigue

Fatigue has been cited as the number one reason behind most fatal truck accidents. Truck drivers simply may not realize that a motorcyclist is coming their direction. Blind spots on trucks tend to make things even worse. Unless a truck driver is really paying attention, small cars or motorcyclists can be completely obscured from their field of view. Depending on the facts of any case, there may be numerous sources of liability for a truck accident. 

Liability In Truck Accidents

Truck drivers have a legal responsibility to obey all relevant traffic laws and take steps to avoid accidents. A fully loaded semi-truck can weigh over 80,000 lbs and have a very wide turning radius. Truck drivers that are making a left turn must first yield the right of way to all vehicles that are close enough to create a hazard. According to California Vehicle Code 21801:

“The driver of a vehicle intending to turn to the left or to complete a U-turn upon a highway, or to turn left into public or private property, or an alley, shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles approaching from the opposite direction which are close enough to constitute a hazard at any time during the turning movement, and shall continue to yield the right-of-way to the approaching vehicles until the left turn or U-turn can be made with reasonable safety.”

Any truck that is involved in a left turn accident may face civil liability if any person is injured. The family members of the victim may have the ability to file a claim for damages including lost wages, funeral expenses, medical bills and pain and suffering. Unfortunately, truck companies will often fight hard to deny any liability for an accident.  A truck accident attorney can examine all of the facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are. 

Investigating A Truck Accident

We at West Coast Trial Lawyers extend our deepest condolences to the family of Richard Kittle as they are going through such a difficult time. Any person that may have seen what happened should reach out to police as they continue to investigate. Traffic engineers should also examine this intersection to see if there could possibly be any improvements that make it safer. 

If you or someone that you care about has been involved in a truck accident you may have legal recourse. Our team of personal injury attorneys are here to answer any questions that you have. We care deeply about making sure that accident victims get the support and justice that they deserve. Whether you need more information about a specific accident or just have questions about your rights we are here for you. You’re always welcome to reach out to us anytime at (888) 888-9285. 

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