A 17-year-old boy was seriously injured in a Los Angeles car accident after a car struck him, the morning of November 15, 2011. According to a news report in The San Gabriel Valley Tribune, the pedestrian accident occurred at the intersection of Puente and Temple avenues in Bassett, when the student was walking to Bassett High School. The teen suffered head trauma and was airlifted to an area hospital. It is unclear if the driver involved will be cited for the collision. An investigation is ongoing.
My thoughts and prayers are with the Bassett High School student who has apparently been seriously injured. I wish him the very best for a complete and speedy recovery.
Los Angeles Pedestrian Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), 29 people were killed and 327 were injured in pedestrian accidents in the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County. In Los Angeles County as a whole, 179 people died and 4,918 were injured due to pedestrian accidents, during the same year.
Laws Related to Pedestrians
Under California law, motorists are required to yield the right of way to pedestrians in marked or unmarked crosswalks. California Vehicle Code Section 21950 states: “The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.” The same section states that the driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked crosswalk “shall exercise all due care and shall reduce the speed of a vehicle or take any other action relating to the operating of the vehicle as necessary to safeguard the safety of the pedestrian.”
Also, according to this vehicle code: “This section does not relieve a pedestrian from the duty of using due care for his or her safety. No pedestrian may suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard. No pedestrian may unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a marked or unmarked crosswalk.”
In this particular case, officials are trying to determine whether the student darted into traffic or if he was crossing safely in a crosswalk. If the driver is determined to have been at fault, he or she can be held liable for the student’s injuries. Injured victims in such cases can seek compensation for medical expenses, hospital costs, surgeries, rehabilitation, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. Car accident victims or their families would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer, who will analyze all facets of the incident and ensure that the negligent parties are held liable.