A pedestrian was killed in a car crash in Downey, which officials say, was caused by suspected street racers. According to an NBC Los Angeles news report, the incident was reported at the intersection of Bellflower Boulevard and Imperial Highway the night of February 28, 2016. Police said a black BMW 328i and a grey Hyundai Tiburon were racing eastbound on Imperial Highway, with speeds reaching 100 mph. When the vehicles reached the intersection, the BMW crashed into a Nissan that was making a left turn from a westbound lane.
As the BMW crashed and lost control, it struck a man who was standing on the sidewalk. The pedestrian was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the Hyundai managed to avoid crashing into the Altima. Three occupants from the Nissan were transported to an area with what were described as moderate injuries. The drivers of the BMW and the Hyundai were arrested and booked on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter.
We offer our deepest condolences to the family members and friends of the deceased pedestrian for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. We also wish the injured victims the very best for a quick and full recovery.
Street Racing and the Law
Based on this news report, this accident was caused by street racing. This is the second fatal crash this week in the Los Angeles area that has been attributed to street racing. On February 20, 2016, three people were killed in a crash on the 5 Freeway in Commerce when two vehicles racing each other went out of control and caused a devastating crash. In that case too, the victims were innocent bystanders who had nothing to do with the racing.
Racing on a public roadway is illegal under California law. California Vehicle Code section 23109 (a) states: “A person shall not engage in a motor vehicle speed contest on a highway. As used in this section, a motor vehicle speed contest includes a motor vehicle race against another vehicle, a clock, or other timing device.”
In this particular case, the family of the deceased victim can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault parties seeking compensation for damages including medical and funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering and loss of love and companionship. The victims who suffered injuries can also seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, rehabilitation, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer will be able to advise injured victims and their families in such cases regarding their legal rights and options.