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1 dead and 3 injured in car crash on California bridge

A 28-year-old man who drove his 2012 Mercedes-Benz the wrong way in the eastbound lane of the Gerald Desmond Bridge in Long Beach remained in critical condition on Aug. 1. Authorities have not been able to determine why he was driving erratically. Earlier in the day, police had spotted the Mercedes crashing into event barricades at the Special Olympics.

Upon entering the bridge, the Mercedes struck two vehicles, a Nissan pickup truck and a Ford Fusion. Long Beach police reported that civilians assisted in their attempts to rescue the driver in the truck, but the person perished at the accident scene. Authorities have not yet released the name of the victim. The jaws of life were needed to extricate the driver of the Mercedes from the mangled vehicle while flames spread from its engine. The driver of the Ford Fusion, a 21-year-old from San Pedro, also went to a hospital in critical condition. During the rescue efforts, a police officer injured his arm.

The bridge was closed from early morning until the afternoon as authorities cleaned up the debris and collected evidence. Gas and oil leaking into the water from the wrecked vehicles required authorities to alert the Coast Guard to the water contamination.

Motor vehicle collisions often raise many questions in the initial stages of investigation. An attorney for an injured victim could review the police investigation report and other evidence in order to determine whether the negligence of another driver was the cause. In such an event, it may be appropriate to file a personal injury lawsuit seeking damages from the responsible party.

Source: NBC Los Angeles, "Fatal Wrong-Way Car Crash on Long Beach Bridge Under Investigation", Irene Moore and Jane Yamamoto, Aug. 1, 2015

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