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Baby Killed in South Los Angeles Pedestrian Accident


A 10-month-old was killed in a pedestrian accident when the child and the mother were struck in a South Los Angeles crosswalk. According to a CBS Los Angeles news report, the fatal pedestrian accident occurred the morning of July 21, 2016. Los Angeles police said 36-year-old Juana Oxlaj was attempting to cross Broadway westbound at the north crosswalk at 59th Place with her child when the accident occurred.

The pickup truck driver was making a left onto Broadway when it collided with the pedestrians. The victims were transported to an area hospital where the infant was later pronounced dead. The mother suffered head trauma, but is expected to survive, and was listed in stable condition. Police said the driver, 38-year-old Esteban Carbajal, stopped and remained at the scene. They do not believe alcohol or drugs played a part in this fatal crash. The investigation is still ongoing.

Los Angeles Pedestrian Accidents

There were 90 fatalities and 2,639 injuries reported as a result of pedestrian accidents in the city of Los Angeles, according to California Highway Patrol’s 2013 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS). In Los Angeles County as a whole, 211 people died and 4,721 were injured due to pedestrian accidents during the same year.

Crosswalk Laws

Based on this news report, it appears that the mother and child were in a crosswalk when the driver of the pickup truck made a turn and struck them. Under California law, motorists are required to stop and yield the right of way to pedestrians who are walking in 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.”

Liability Issues

If the driver in this case is determined to have been negligent, he could be held liable for the victims’ losses. In such cases, injured victims can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, rehabilitation, pain and suffering and emotional distress. Families of deceased victims can also seek compensation against at-fault drivers by filing what is known as a wrongful death claim. Victims and families in such cases would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles pedestrian accident lawyer who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that their legal rights and best interests are protected.

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