Traffic investigators in San Pedro are still trying to figure out what caused a fatal rollover crash on December 25, 2008 on the 110 Freeway. The fatal rollover crash killed 38-year old Sheryl Ann Thacker and her mother, Carmela Rodriguez, 64. Injured in this Harbor City auto accident were Thacker’s son Richard Pena, 21, her 12-year-old daughter and a relative, 22-year-old Matthew Crunk. Our source for this blog was this news report in the Daily Breeze.
Police say Thacker lost control of her 1994 Chevy minivan north on the freeway at 60 to 65 mph. Thacker apparently lost control of the vehicle for unknown reasons and suddenly veered to the right. The minivan then traveled across all traffic lanes and struck the wood and metal guardrail on the right shoulder. The impact of the collision caused the vehicle to roll over and land upside down.
What a horrible fate to be met with on the way to a Christmas Day gathering! My heart goes out to all members of Sheryl Ann Thacker’s family. Not only do they have to bury two family members during the holidays, but must deal with other injured victims who are recovering from this awful crash. This family will certainly be in my prayers and I offer my deepest condolences for their tragic loss.
Investigators are saying that Thacker does not appear to have lost control of the minivan because she fell asleep at the wheel. They say she may have had a medical condition, but seem to suspect a mechanical malfunction in the Chevy minivan. Investigators are apparently taking the vehicle apart to figure out what may have gone wrong.
If I were a member of the Thacker family, I would take great care to preserve the vehicle in its current crashed condition because if this turned into a product liability lawsuit, that minivan will be the most important piece of evidence. I would also urge the Thacker family to retain the services of a nationally renowned auto product defect law firm, which has a successful track record of handling defective auto product cases and being able to hold their own against large auto makers such as General Motors and Ford.
If it is determined that an auto product defect or a mechanical malfunction caused Thacker to lose control of her vehicle, then her family would be entitled to significant compensation for medical/funeral costs and loss of current and future wages.