City of San Diego Pays $1.8 Million in Motorcycle Accident Case

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The family of a motorcycle rider who was killed in 2009 will receive $1.8 million in a settlement agreement reached with the City of San Diego. Kenneth Sully was killed at an accident-prone intersection at Pacific Highway and Cedar Street when he collided with a Toyota Corolla.

The family’s attorney Benjamin Bunn was able to show that the city of well-aware of the dangers posed by the configuration of the intersection, and that efforts to make it safer – including the addition of a $3,000 traffic signal – were repeatedly denied by city officials. According to news accounts, there were a dozen accidents at the intersection between 2006 and 2009, and that the city was aware of the dangers as far back as 1999. Three months after the fatality, the city installed a proper traffic signal.

According to the San Diego Union Tribune:

City Attorney Jan Goldsmith explained that the city had been slow to address complaints about the intersection’s dangers after a left-turn lane was created on southbound Pacific Highway in 1997. The city didn’t erect a left-turn yield sign or a turn signal, which left the impression that drivers could turn left — into oncoming traffic — once the signal turned green. Several attempts to fix the problem fizzled through the years because of budget woes and employee incompetence, Goldsmith said.

The settlement required approval by the San Diego City Council, who approved the settlement last Tuesday.

Sully, who was 58 at the time of his death, left behind a wife and daughter.

Source: San Diego Union Tribune

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