California news reports that Olympian Bruce Jenner was involved in a fatal chain-reaction car crash on the Pacific Coast Highway near Malibu. According to officials, the lead car – a Toyota Prius – slowed down, and then was rear-ended by a woman driving a Lexus. The Lexus was pushed into oncoming traffic, where it was hit head-on by a Hummer. At some point during the collision Jenner's SUV ran into the Prius, however reports are conflicting concerning the exact timing.
In all, four vehicles were damaged and one person died. The accident remains under investigation and authorities have requested cell phone records of all drivers involved to determine whether distracted driving may have been a factor in the accident.
Distracted driving – especially texting while driving – remains one of the top causes of fatal California car accidents. In fact, texting while driving is a greater hazard on the roads than drinking and driving. The National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA) reveals that people texting or reading texts are 23% more likely to get into a car accident. Further, according to the Department of Transportation (DOT), across the United States, cell phone use is a factor in 1.6 automobile-related accidents each year, causing roughly 500,000 injuries and 6,000 fatalities. In a recent California Traffic Safety Survey, 70% of California drivers responded that they had been hit or nearly hit by a driver who was talking or texting on a cell phone.
It is unknown whether any of the drivers involved in the accident were on their cell-phone at the time of the collision.
For more information, or if you or a loved one has been injured by a distracted driver, we urge you to contact the experienced San Francisco car accident attorneys at Bostwick & Peterson, LLP for an immediate consultation.