A 51-year-old man suffered major injuries after being struck by a taxi in Newport Beach. According to a news report in the Daily Pilot, the critical injury crash occurred the night of February 4, 2013 near East Coast Highway and MacArthur Boulevard. Officials say the man was walking toward the sidewalk in the transition lane at East Coast Highway and MacArthur Boulevard when a 2003 Ford Crown Victoria taxicab struck him. The man was transported to a regional trauma center. The taxi driver, a 54-year-old Santa Ana man, was uninjured. Police do not believe drugs or alcohol were factors in this collision. No citations or arrests were reported. Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 949-644-3747.
OC Pedestrian Crashes
There were 41 injuries reported in Newport Beach as a result of pedestrian accidents, according to California Highway Patrol’s 2010 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS). Countywide, 32 people died and 770 were injured due to pedestrian collisions during the same year.
Who Had the Right-of-Way?
Based on this news report, it appears that the pedestrian was in a transition lane at East Coast Highway and MacArthur Boulevard, which is a major intersection. It is not clear if the pedestrian was walking in a crosswalk at the time of the collision. Pedestrians have right-of-way when they are walking 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 also 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.”
I trust officials are also looking into who had the light at the time of the collision and whether speed or distracted driving played a part. If the driver is determined to have been at fault, he could be held liable for the injuries caused here. Injured victims in such cases can seek compensation to cover damages including medical expenses, lost wages, cost of hospitalization, rehabilitation, pain and suffering and emotional distress. Injured car crash victims would also be well advised to contact an experienced personal injury attorney in Newport Beach who will stay on top of the official investigation and ensure that their legal rights and best interests are preserved.