News

Menlo Park: 90-year-old driver ordered to test for license after horrific crash

6-year-old remains hospitalized in serious but stable condition

The 90-year-old driver whose car jumped a curb in downtown Menlo Park and pinned twin 6-year-old boys against the wall is without a license -- at least for now.

One twin emerged from the crash with a broken arm, while his brother remains in serious but stable condition at Stanford Hospital following several hours of surgery after the Oct. 17 accident.

Menlo Park Police Cmdr. Dave Bertini said officers took the license and issued a priority re-examination notice. The driver "has five business days to contact the DMV office of driver safety to set up an appointment to be retested. If he does not do so his license would be suspended."

The police department does not currently know if the driver has followed through, he said.

Police are refusing to identify the driver at this point, which is standard practice when someone has not been charged. Police would not confirm anything about his occupation.

California doesn't have separate licensing standards for senior drivers, according to the Department of Motor Vehicles, but instead looks at every driver's mental and physical ability to comply with traffic laws.

The driver, a Woodside resident, was in a silver 2012 BMW SUV outside the Walgreens on Santa Cruz Avenue when he may have hit the accelerator instead of the brake, according to witnesses.

Options for charging him are limited by law, as he did have a valid license and wasn't under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, police said. The driver could be charged with an infraction for driving on the sidewalk if found to be at fault, but the district attorney will decide whether to press charges.

Cmdr. Bertini said that does not preclude the possibility of a civil lawsuit.

Police ask that witnesses call 330-6300.

Comments

Posted by Annabelle, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Oct 21, 2013 at 1:25 pm

The driver jumped a "curve"?
Perhaps it was a "curb" and not a "curve"?


Posted by Sandy Brundage, Almanac Staff Writer, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 21, 2013 at 1:38 pm

Fixed.


Posted by Hmmm, a resident of another community
on Oct 21, 2013 at 1:43 pm

What is the name of this potentially deadly driver?


Posted by WhoRUpeople, a resident of another community
on Oct 21, 2013 at 2:05 pm

The article clearly states that the name of the driver has not been released because it is standard policy not to do so unless someone has been charged with a violation/crime. Its the way our legal system is set up to protect the innocent. The way it should be.


Posted by John Murphy, a resident of another community
on Oct 21, 2013 at 3:19 pm

Interesting.

Let's say I jumped a curb and hit 2 young boys. I would expect that would be cause for me to lose my license. This driver shouldn't need a retest - he should have his license suspended for cause without bothering with a retest.


Posted by Karen, a resident of another community
on Oct 21, 2013 at 3:22 pm

Regarding the author's comment that "Options for charging him are limited by law, as he did have a valid license and wasn't under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, police said. The driver could be charged with an infraction for driving on the sidewalk if found to be at fault, but the district attorney will decide whether to press charges."

That makes it sound like driving on a sidewalk is the only thing the law allows a driver to be charged with in a situation like this. Not true. The law also allows charging a driver for the offense of unsafe operation of a motor vehicle with bodily injury or great bodily injury.

See
Web Link
and
Web Link


Posted by Sandy Brundage, Staff Writer, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 21, 2013 at 3:51 pm

Karen:

Those are still infractions, with minimal penalties such as a $70 to $95 fine.


Posted by Hmmm, a resident of another community
on Oct 21, 2013 at 4:15 pm

That's okay - I'll find out his name using other methods.


Posted by Susan, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 21, 2013 at 6:31 pm

I can not imagine that driver would ever WANT to drive again!


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Oct 21, 2013 at 6:37 pm

This story is featured 3 times on your homepage. Once, would be adequate.
This is journalism?


Posted by Let's Care, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 21, 2013 at 8:53 pm

Any updates on the children?


Posted by The Good, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 22, 2013 at 1:10 pm

the last update from this weekend is one of the twin boys was in surgery for several hours and is stable- [Portion removed. Please don't discuss or speculate about personal medical matters.] So sad for such a young child to be in this situation. There is also an update on the Cadigan family on the Oak Knoll shool website at Web Link


Posted by WhoRUpeople, a resident of another community
on Oct 22, 2013 at 2:01 pm

@Hmmm I'm confident that you can/will find out his name. I happen to know it through my own sources. The only thing I would like to ask isn't why you personally feel the need to know, that is of course your business not mine, but rather, that when you do that you keep it to yourself for your own purposes. I don't know the gentleman personally, but know someone who does. I'm told that he is an individual who would never want to hurt someone, especially a child. I'm sure he, too, is in his own kind of pain. Rather, how about we both just hope for a full recovery, physically and mentally, for everyone involved?


Posted by CarolG, a resident of another community
on Oct 23, 2013 at 7:33 pm

Sending best wishes for recovery to the boys, and all involved. Thankful that they were so close to Stanford/Packard Children's Hospital when this tragic accident occurred.


Posted by Loretta , a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 27, 2013 at 10:35 am

I'm pretty sure the driver feels bad about the accident. But why on earth would a 90-year old drive a BMW SUV? Isn't it too much horse power for an elderly driver?! I have to say I don't understand all the hype around these SUVs. This is Menlo Park, not a ranch.


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