Fourteen people were injured, two critically, after a 15-passenger van collided with another vehicle in Lancaster the afternoon of April 6. According to a KTLA news report, passengers in the 15-passenger van had chartered it in Culver City for a trip to Lancaster to view the poppy fields. The van was traveling westbound along Avenue F when it slammed into a Mini Cooper going north on 60th Street. The van rolled over twice before hitting a light pole and coming to a stop.
Two of the 14 patients were airlifted in critical condition from the scene. Ten others were transported to the hospital and two others declined treatment. Officials said most people had their seatbelts on and that might have saved their lives. The female driver of the van said she was not familiar with the area. Police don’t believe alcohol or drugs played a part in the crash. However authorities said it is possible that the van’s driver may have run a stop sign at the intersection. All victims were adults. No arrests or citations have been reported. The investigation is ongoing.
Our thoughts and prayers are with all the injured victims of this van accident. We wish them the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.
The Danger Posed by Passenger Vans
Despite warnings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 15-passenger vans are still widely used to transport school children, church groups, employees in car pools and charter tours. Because of their design, these vans have an issue with stability and have the propensity to roll over in the event of a collision. According to NHTSA, nearly 60 percent of fatalities in accidents involving 15-passenger vans were a result of the vehicles rolling over.
In this particular case, it appears that the driver of the van may have run a stop sign at the intersection. It is also unclear who owns and operates the van involved in the crash. In such cases, the charter company, driver and/or van owner may be held liable for the injuries, damages and losses caused. Injured victims can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, cost of rehabilitation, permanent injuries, disabilities and pain and suffering.
In addition to these parties, the manufacturer of the van can also be held liable for making a defective vehicle with poor design that makes it prone to rollovers. An experienced Los Angeles van accident lawyer who has successfully held automakers accountable can help injured victims secure maximum compensation for their losses.