All drivers have a responsibility to obey the laws of the roadway. This includes yielding the right of way to other drivers when warranted. Not only can failing to yield the right of way lead to traffic citations, but it can also lead to liability in the case of an accident. When failure to yield is the proximate cause of a traffic accident, any person who is injured or has property damage can sue the other driver for compensatory damages. If the injuries exceed the payout for that policy, the injured party can sue for damages only after first filing a claim with their personal injury protection insurance.
The Boston Globe reports that the former Holy Cross rowing coach has been cited for failure to yield in a fatal Florida crash.
The crash occurred last month as the coach was driving the team in a rented van to practice. Thirteen people were injured, and one student was killed in the accident.
Former coach Patrick Diggins has been cited by the Vero Beach police for failure to yield to oncoming traffic. At about 7:30 A.M. on January 15th, Diggins was at an intersection of a busy, six-lane roadway. He attempted to turn left on a green light, but the traffic light did not display a green arrow. He pulled directly into the path of an oncoming vehicle.
Diggins told authorities in a later interview that he had looked up from a dashboard GPS system and saw that he had the green light and proceeded into the intersection. The driver of the truck told police that Diggins appeared to be looking down as he pulled out into the path of the truck. Another witness corroborated that account of events.
Diggins had coached the Holy Cross rowing team for 34 years. He announced his retirement last week.