A 24-year-old woman was killed in a Los Angeles car accident involving a hit-and-run driver, who officials say, was under the influence of alcohol. According to a news report in The San Gabriel Valley Tribune, the fatal bicycle accident occurred on Los Robles Avenue in Pasadena during the early morning hours of September 18, 2011. The woman was riding her bicycle with her boyfriend at the time and had fallen down on the roadway. A car, driven by 21-year-old Nicholas Avila, struck her and then fled the scene. The victim died from her injuries at a nearby hospital. A witness to the hit-and-run accident assisted the authorities in finding the motorist. The suspect now faces charges of leaving the scene of an injury accident and driving under the influence.
My heartfelt condolences go out to the family and friends of the woman killed in this tragic hit-and-run car accident. My thoughts and prayers are with them during this difficult time.
Los Angeles County DUI Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), one person was killed and 62 were injured due to alcohol-related crashes in Pasadena. During that same year, 204 fatalities and 4,672 injuries occurred involving Los Angeles County DUI collisions.
It appears from the report that the driver involved in this fatal bicycle accident was under the influence of alcohol. According to California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a): “It is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle.”
Additionally, the driver fled the collision site, leaving the critically injured bicyclist on the roadway without care or medical attention. Appalling! California Vehicle Code Section 20001 (a) states: “The driver of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to a person, other than himself or herself, or in the death of a person shall immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident.” I commend the witness who alerted the authorities and helped them arrest the hit-and-run driver.
In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, the family of a deceased car accident victim can seek compensation by filing a wrongful death claim. These types of claims are filed by immediate family members of the victim and seek damages such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, and loss of love and companionship. An experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer will be able to advise families about how their own car insurance policy applies to an incident where the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured.