A Vista teenager was killed last Thursday afternoon just hours after getting his motorcycle license.

Vista Teenager Killed in Motorcycle CrashChris Hendrickson, 19, was driving a Suzuki motorcycle around 1 p.m. Thursday when he collided with a Subaru hatchback in the 2000 block of Hacienda Drive, the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department said.

The crash closed lanes of traffic in both directions on Hacienda Drive between Via Centre and Thunder Drive for several hours.

Hendrickson, who was one day shy of his 20th birthday, was taken to a local hospital where he later died. The driver of the Subaru was not injured.

“Our thoughts are with Chris Hendrickson’s family and friends,” said Brett Schreiber, partner at Singleton Schreiber. “Losing someone so young in such an unexpected way is devastating.”

Friends and coworkers gathered near the crash site Thursday to leave flowers, light candles and sing “Happy Birthday” to Hendrickson. Louis Gomez, the owner of the Vista Chick-fil-A where Hendrickson worked, told local news outlets that Hendrickson was one of his best employees, someone who would “make friends with anybody.”

Nearly All People Who Die in Crashes While on Their Motorcycles Are Men

Motorcycles account for less than 1% of total vehicle miles traveled in the United States, but 15% of the traffic fatalities, according to data compiled by the National Safety Council.

In all, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which tracks all fatal motor vehicle collisions across the country, reports that more than 6,200 motorcyclists were killed in accidents in 2022 — approximately one every hour and a half.

And nearly all of the motorcyclists killed in crashes are men; as of 2021, only 4% of the motorcycle drivers who died in crashes were women.

The investigation into Hendrickson’s crash is still ongoing, but deputies don’t believe that alcohol or drugs were involved.

“Hopefully the investigation will get to the bottom of all relevant circumstances surrounding this crash,” Schreiber said. “There’s a level of uncertainty involved with accidents, and that’s what attorneys are there to help with. An attorney can guide you through the process after an accident, so you can focus on peace of mind for yourself and your family.”

If you or a loved one has been involved in a crash with a motorcycle, contact Singleton Schreiber by email at info@singletonschreiber.com