Juan Gonzalez, 26, was killed and another woman was injured in a Los Angeles car accident the morning of September 20, 2009, the Pasadena Star News reports. The car crash occurred on the eastbound 210 Freeway at Citrus Avenue in Azusa, California Highway Patrol officials said. They are still investigating why the Ford Mustang, which was in the carpool lane, suddenly swerved toward the right shoulder. Officials say Gonzalez, who was not wearing his seatbelt, was ejected from the Mustang, which then rolled on top of him. The woman sustained injuries but is said to be in stable condition.
I offer my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Juan Gonzalez for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. I also wish the injured woman the very best for a speedy and complete recovery from her injuries. Please keep them in your prayers.
Car Accidents in Los Angeles
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2007 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), two fatalities and 249 injuries were reported in the city of Azusa as a result of car accidents. In Los Angeles County as a whole, 712 fatalities and 56,475 injuries occurred in 2007 involving car accidents.
Based on this newspaper report and the preliminary official findings, speed may have played a role in this fatal car accident. In fact, officials received a report stating that the Ford Mustang was involved in a street race shortly before the crash. However, as Los Angeles auto products liability lawyers, we know that preliminary accident reports can sometimes be misleading and inaccurate. In any such car accident it is possible that a mechanical malfunction may have caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle. Sometimes, a vehicle defect may have also caused the car to malfunction.
Auto Products Liability Issues
Also, in any incident that involves a vehicle occupant who is ejected, it is important to look into whether there were any seatbelt defects. Very often we see that vehicle occupants are ejected and investigating law enforcement officials tend to conclude that they were not buckled up. But, we know that this can also happen because of seatbelt failure, which is a common auto product defect in many vehicles.
Unless an investigation is done by an expert who knows what they are looking for, an investigator is only guessing that an ejected vehicle occupant was not wearing a seat belt. The body of the ejected person needs to be examined for evidence of seat belt bruising and marking. The webbing needs to be microscopically examined for grabber marks, blood stains and other marks and foreign objects that would indicate the seat belt was in use at the time of an accident. Maybe in this particular Los Angeles car accident, Juan Gonzalez wasn’t wearing his seat belt. But there is no way to say for sure, until a thorough investigation is done.
Injured victims or their families in such cases would be well-advised to contact a reputed Los Angeles personal injury lawyer, who is well-versed in handling auto products liability cases, especially those that involve seat restraint system failure. The best personal injury law firms will always offer a free and comprehensive consultation to injured victims and/or their families.