A moped rider suffered fatal injuries when an SUV driver cut him off. The deadly crash happened near the town of Simpsonville in Greenville County, South Carolina (SC), on the evening of May 5, 2017.
According to law enforcement officials, the 17-year-old behind the wheel of the SUV caused the wreck as he was attempting to cross Batesville Road while traveling along Godfrey Road. Stop signs posted on the corners and stop bars painted on the pavement control the entry of vehicles from both sides of Godfrey Road, but no lights or signs restrict the flow of traffic on Batesville.
News reports indicate that the moped rider died at the scene and that the teen driver of the SUV will face charges. The nature of the charges was not made public, but it is likely that the at-fault driver will be cited at least for failing to yield right of way to the moped rider. Section 56.5-2330 of the South Carolina Code of Laws states that
[E]very driver of a vehicle approaching a stop sign shall stop at a clearly marked stop line … at the point nearest the intersecting roadway where the driver has a view of approaching traffic on the intersecting roadway before entering it. After having stopped, the driver shall yield the right-of-way to any vehicle in the intersection or approaching on another roadway so closely as to constitute an immediate hazard during the time when such driver is moving across or within the intersection or junction of roadways.
Drivers under the age of 18 are particularly prone to violating right of way statutes. As the Young Driver page of the California Department of Motor Vehicles website notes, “Teenagers tend to take more risks while driving partly due to their overconfidence in their driving abilities. Young novice drivers are more likely to engage in risky behaviors like speeding, tailgating, running red lights, violating traffic signs and signals, making illegal turns, passing dangerously and failure to yield to pedestrians.”
Sadly, such inadvertent errors too often lead to avoidable crashes, injuries and deaths. The family of the moped rider who lost his life in Greenville County, SC, could have strong grounds for filing a wrongful death lawsuit even if no criminal case results from the deadly wreck. Consulting with a caring and experienced Carolina plaintiff’s lawyer will help them understand their legal rights and options.