Isaac Zaldivar, a 21-year-old Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputy, was killed in a Southern California motorcycle accident on March 7, 2009 after his motorcycle collided with a car at the intersection of Rosemead Boulevard and Terradell Street in Pico Rivera, the Whittier Daily News reports. Zaldivar was riding his motorcycle north on Rosemead when it hit a Toyota Camry headed westbound on Terradell and driven by a 75-year-old woman. Zaldivar was taken to an area hospital where he died from injuries sustained in the motorcycle versus car accident. Zaldivar’s 17-year-old brother, who was riding with him at the time of the crash, escaped with minor injuries. The elderly woman behind the wheel of the Camry was uninjured.
My heart goes out to the family, friends and co-workers of Isaac Zaldivar. I offer my deepest sympathies to them. Please keep them in your prayers.
Apparently that stretch of Rosemead Boulevard where this tragic accident occurred was a dangerous roadway where visibility has always been a problem. Pico Rivera City Councilman Ron Beilke says that accidents occur way too often along that stretch of Rosemead Boulevard and over the last four years, the City Council has frequently “addressed the issue of visibility on that street.” He says the city now has more of a reason to address this dangerous roadway now that a police officer has lost his life at the dangerous intersection.
Under the provisions of California’s Government Code, Section 835, a public entity is liable for injuries caused by a condition of public property when the injured person proves that:
- There was a dangerous condition on the public property at the time of injury
- That the injury was caused by that dangerous condition.
- The dangerous condition created a reasonably foreseeable risk of injury of the kind that occurred.
Either (a) The negligent or wrongful action or failure to act of an employee of the public entity created the dangerous condition, or (b) the public entity had actual or constructive notice of the dangerous condition a sufficient time before the injury to have taken measures to protect against the dangerous condition
Also, for a condition to be dangerous for purposes of government liability, it must be dangerous when it is used by motorists or others who are exercising due care as opposed to those who are themselves being negligent.
In this case, it appears that the city of Pico Rivera did have notice of the dangerous condition on Rosemead Boulevard. According to their own council member, they’ve been discussing this for four years now! The question here is: Could this tragedy and the death of Isaac Zaldivar, a young police officer, have been prevented had the City Council taken prompt action to fix the dangerous condition on this Pico Rivera roadway.
The family of Isaac Zaldivar would be well-advised to consult a reputed Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney who has experience dealing with dangerous roadway and intersection accident cases and handling cases against government agencies in California. A skilled California personal injury lawyer will also look into whether the other driver was at fault, determine the facts of the case and hold all negligent parties accountable for their actions. The best California personal injury lawyers will provide a free, comprehensive and confidential consultation to victims and their families.