The weekday lunch crowd at a Laguna Hills restaurant received an unwelcome surprise when a car crashed through a window and into the dining area recently.
The elderly driver reportedly thought she had put the car in reverse instead of into drive when she accelerated forward into the restaurant. She was treated at a nearby hospital for minor injuries. The driver's passenger, her husband, was uninjured.
Three diners at the restaurant were also injured in the incident, two of them seriously. Police responded to the scene and aided a woman with head injuries; she was transported to the hospital. Her son was hospitalized due to back injuries. A restaurant patron seated at a different table was also taken to the hospital for treatment, though her injuries were minor.
The patrons were not the only ones with damages caused by the possibly negligent driver. The restaurant was immediately closed, pending inspection to determine whether it is structurally sound.
The driver of the vehicle was elderly, in her late 80s. As the population of California and the nation generally steadily ages, the question may arise more often as to whether, or when, it becomes an issue of negligence for some drivers to continue to get behind the wheel when their physical abilities are in decline due to advanced age.
Car accidents caused by possibly negligent or distracted drivers can change the lives of Orange County residents immediately and possibly permanently. People who have suffered injuries due to a car collision are well advised to reach out for the help of an experienced legal representative, to make sure that they receive the compensation they need to allow them to get back on their feet and get on with their lives.
Source: Orange County Register, "Four hurt when car crashes into Polly's Pies restaurant," Denisse Salazar, Sept. 22, 2014