Elijah Miclea, 56, of Hawthorne was killed in a Lawndale bicycle accident on November 24, 2008 when he was struck by a Waste Management garbage truck, the Daily Breeze reports. The 11/24/08 fatal bicycle accident occurred at Marine Avenue and Hawthorne Boulevard. Miclea was on a bicycle on the southeast corner of the intersection when the Waste Management truck made a right turn and collided with the bicycle. Miclea was knocked down and fell under the wheels. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
My heart goes out to the family and friends of Elijah Miclea for their tragic loss. I offer my deepest condolences to them.
According to California Highway Patrol’s Statewide Traffic Reporting System, there were no bicycle accident fatalities in Lawndale in the year 2006. However, 14 injuries involving bicycle accidents were reported that year. In Los Angeles County as a whole, 29 fatalities and 2,906 injuries were reported as a result of bicycle accidents.
If I were a member of Elijah Miclea’s family, I would absolutely want some answers as to how and why this fatal bicycle crash occurred. Right now, there are only questions and not many answers. What is obvious is that the truck driver did not see the bicyclist while making a right turn at that intersection. There are many reasons for this including driver distractions or a hazardous roadway.
I’d urge Elijah Miclea’s family to retain the services of an experienced California bicycle accident attorney who will look into this case, determine the facts and identify the responsible parties. If it is determined that this accident was the truck driver’s fault then both the driver and his employer, Waste Management, could be held liable for Elijah Miclea’s wrongful death. If a hazardous roadway contributed to the crash, then the city or the government agency responsible for maintaining that Lawndale roadway could be held liable. Please remember that any claim against a government agency must be filed within six months of the accident.