An elderly woman was killed in a Riverside pedestrian accident after an SUV struck her while crossing the roadway. According to a news report in The Press Enterprise, the fatal accident occurred the morning of December 4, 2014. Police say the woman was in the crosswalk on Lincoln Avenue when she was struck by an SUV making a left turn from westbound Machado Street in Lake Elsinore.
The victim was taken to an area hospital where she died from her injuries. Although there is a light at the intersection where the accident occurred, there is no left turn arrow. Investigators are still looking into whether the pedestrian had a walk signal. Neighbors say there are often accidents at that intersection and that a pedestrian was injured there as recently as last week. Residents say traffic travels too fast on Machado and that a left turn arrow would help make the intersection safer.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family members and friends of this deceased victim. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Pedestrian Accidents in Riverside County
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2012 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were two fatalities and 17 injuries involving pedestrian accidents in Lake Elsinore. In Riverside County as a whole, 45 people died and 373 were injured due to pedestrian accidents during the same year.
Based on this news report, it appears that the pedestrian was walking in a crosswalk at the time of the collision. 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.”
If the driver was determined to have been at fault, he or she could be held liable for the victim’s wrongful death. In cases where negligence is involved, families of deceased victims can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for damages including medical and funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering and loss of love and companionship.
An experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer will also be able to determine if a dangerous intersection caused or contributed to the incident. If that was the case, the city or governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can also be held liable. Under California Government Code Section 911.2, any personal injury or wrongful death claim against a governmental entity must be filed within 180 days of the incident.