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Motorcyclist Seriously Injured After Being Struck by Drunk Driver

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A Gainesville man suffered catastrophic injury following a collision between a motorcycle and a pickup truck. The accident occurred on March 15, 2014 at approximately 8:30 pm, just outside of Alachua.

According to authorities, 35-year-old Joel Cellon, of 23116 NW County Road 2054, was traveling east, in his Dodge Dakota pickup truck, along NW 94th Avenue. Headed west on the same roadway, was a 66-year-old helmeted motorcyclist, Dennis Macaluso, of Alachua. As Cellon was attempting to make a left turn onto NW 202nd Street, he struck the motorcyclist with his truck. As a result, Macaluso was thrown from his motorcycle, and sustained life-threatening injuries. He was transported to UF Health Shands Hospital for a broken neck and limited brain activity.

Suspecting alcohol may have been a factor in the collision, authorities requested that Cellon complete a field sobriety test, which after initially refusing, he subsequently performed poorly, according to the report. In addition, police say that Cellon was using the hood of the patrol car balance, despite his claim that he only consumed one beer. Police later recovered a 32-ounce container of malt liquor, which they were able to connect to Cellon.

Eyewitness to the crash, Nicholas Miller, told authorities that Cellon repeatedly stepped in and out of his vehicle after striking the motorcyclist. Miller also reported that Cellon attempted to restart his vehicle, which officials say was severely damaged as a result of colliding with the motorcyclist. Cellon was transported to Alachua County Jail, where law enforcement alleges a breath test confirmed that the he was in fact intoxicated. Test results revealed a blood-alcohol level of .152 and .153, which is nearly twice Florida’s legal limit of .08.

As Accident & Injury Attorneys, we are well aware that motor vehicles are heavy pieces of equipment that are capable of causing substantial injury or damage—but for vulnerable road users, whether motorcyclist, pedestrian, or bicyclist—the dangers associated with motor vehicles are much greater. Further, when alcohol impaired driving is added into the mix, the combination can create catastrophic results, as was the case in this awful collision.

Despite the fact that the victim was wearing a helmet, this protection was simply not enough to safeguard Macaluso from the force of being stuck by a motor vehicle. The Motorcycle Collision Attorneys of the Law Office of Alba & Yochim P.A. send our well-wishes to the victim as he recovers from his injuries.

If you or a loved one were injured by a drunk driver while riding a motorcycle, it is important that you discuss your legal options with an attorney as soon as possible following the accident. At the Law Office of Alba & Yochim P.A., we believe that when a motorist causes the injury or fatality of another, as result of driving under the influence, they should be held accountable for their actions to the fullest extent possible. More importantly, we believe that innocent victims should be compensated for their resulting injuries or loss, and for this reason, we remain fully dedicated to seeking justice on behalf of all our clients.

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