Robert S. Johnson, 41, was killed in a Riverside car accident after he was struck by an SUV while crossing the road, the evening of October 31, 2011. According to a news report in The Press Enterprise, the fatal pedestrian accident occurred on Arlington Avenue near Lake Street. Johnson was transported to an area hospital where he died. Officials do not believe that alcohol or drugs were factors in this fatal collision. An investigation is ongoing. Anyone who saw this incident is asked to contact Riverside police at 951-826-8723.
I offer my deepest sympathies to the family members and friends of Robert Johnson for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), four people died and 86 were injured due to pedestrian accidents in Riverside. Countywide, pedestrian accidents claimed 39 lives and caused 370 injuries, during the same year.
Laws Relating to Pedestrians
Based on this news report, it is unclear as to whether the pedestrian, Johnson, was in a crosswalk at the time of the accident. Under California law, motorists are required to yield the right of way to pedestrians walking in marked or unmarked crosswalks.
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
If the driver of the SUV was determined to have been at fault, he or she could be held liable for Johnson’s wrongful death. Families of deceased victims would be well advised to contact an experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer, who will analyze all aspects of the incident and ensure that the negligent parties are held liable. In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, a victim’s family can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation to cover medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, loss of companionship, and other related damages.