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Teen Skateboarder Injured in Newport Beach Crosswalk Accident

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A teen skateboarder was injured in a Newport Beach pedestrian accident after a vehicle struck him. According to a news report in the Daily Pilot, the collision occurred the morning of February 12, 2016 on Westcliff Drive near Rutland Road. Police say a 17-year-old male was riding a skateboard and was crossing in a marked crosswalk when a Porsche struck him. The teen suffered cuts and bruises and was taken to an area hospital for evaluation. The driver remained at the scene. No arrests or citations were reported. The cause of the pedestrian accident is still under investigation.

It is indeed fortunate that the teen pedestrian in this case was not critically injured. We wish him the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.

Pedestrian Accident Statistics

According to California Highway Patrol’s 2013 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were no fatalities, but 22 injuries reported as a result of pedestrian accidents in the city of Newport Beach. In Orange County as a whole, 52 people died and 784 were injured due to pedestrian accidents during the same year.

Crosswalk Laws

Based on this news report, it appears that the pedestrian was crossing the street in a marked crosswalk when the vehicle struck him. 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.”

Liability Issues

In this particular case, we hope officials are looking into why the driver did not stop and yield the right of way to the skateboarder. Was he or she distracted? Was the driver speeding or driving at an unsafe speed at the time? Did alcohol or drugs play a part? Was there a dangerous condition at the crosswalk, which may have caused or contributed to this incident?

If the driver is determined to have been at fault here, he or she could be held liable for the injuries and damages caused. Injured victims can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, rehabilitation, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced Newport Beach personal injury attorney will also be able to determine whether a dangerous roadway condition caused or contributed to the incident. If that was the case, the city or governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can also be held liable. Please remember that any personal injury claim against a governmental entity must be filed within 180 days of the incident.

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