Ozenia Brown, 79, was killed in a Los Angeles car accident after she was struck by a van while walking in a marked crosswalk. According to a news report in the Los Angeles Times, the fatal pedestrian accident occurred the evening of November 10, 2011 at the intersection of 110th Street and Western Avenue in South Los Angeles. Officials say the driver of the Chevrolet van, 70-year-old James Willie Douglas, failed to yield the right of way to Brown, who was in a crosswalk. Douglas was uninjured. Brown was pronounced dead at the scene. No charged have been filed against Douglas. An investigation is ongoing.
I offer my deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Ozenia Brown for their tremendous loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Los Angeles Pedestrian Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were 82 fatalities and 2,630 injuries involving pedestrian accidents in the city of Los Angeles. Countywide, pedestrian accidents claimed 179 lives and caused 4,918 injuries, during the same year.
Based on this news report, the driver, Douglas, failed to yield the right of way to the pedestrian who was legally crossing the roadway in a marked crosswalk. 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.”
Fault and Liability
Police report that alcohol or drugs were not involving in this fatal collision. I trust officials are looking into whether distracted driving, inattention, speed or some other form of negligence played a part in this tragic crash. If the driver of the van is determined to have been at fault, he can be held liable for Brown’s wrongful death. In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, the family of a deceased car accident victim can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future wages, loss of companionship, and other related damages. Victims’ families would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer, who will analyze all aspects of the incident and ensure that the at-fault parties are held liable.