A 9-year-old boy was severely injured in a San Diego car accident after he was struck by a city trash truck while riding a skateboard in the North Park area. According to a news report in The San Diego Union-Tribune, the major injury collision occurred the morning of November 17, 2011 at the intersection of Kansas Street and Meade Avenue. Officials say the boy was riding his skateboard on the sidewalk and rode into the street when he was hit. The victim was hospitalized with several broken bones and internal injuries. Officials are still investigating the cause of this crash.
My heart goes out to the young victim of this traffic collision and his family for what they are going through at this time. Thankfully, the boy was wearing a helmet, and does not appear to have suffered any head injuries. I pray for this child’s speedy and complete recovery.
San Diego Pedestrian Accidents
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were 18 fatalities and 494 injuries involving pedestrian accidents in San Diego. Countywide, 57 people died and 937 were injured due to pedestrian accidents, during the same year.
Laws Relating to Pedestrians
Based on this news report, it is not clear if the boy was crossing in a marked or unmarked crosswalk at the intersection, or if he rode into traffic lanes in front of the trash truck. Apparently the skateboarder turned around to look at his friends right before he was struck.
California Vehicle Code Section 21954 states: “Every pedestrian upon a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway so near as to constitute an immediate hazard.” The same section also states: “The provisions of this section shall not relieve the driver of a vehicle from the duty to exercise due care for the safety of any pedestrian upon a roadway.”
I trust officials are looking into whether the driver of the city truck was impaired, distracted, speeding, or negligent in any way. If the truck driver is determined to have been at fault, both, the driver and his or her employer can be held liable for the victim’s serious injuries. In such cases, an injured victim and his or her family can seek compensation to cover all medical expenses, cost of hospitalization, rehabilitation, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. Victims would be well advised to contact an experienced San Diego personal injury lawyer, who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that the negligent parties are held liable. Under California Government Code Section 911.2, any personal injury claim against a governmental agency must be filed within 180 days of the incident.