A man attempting to cross a street while in a wheelchair died from injuries he suffered after a minivan and an SUV struck him early on the morning of July 10.
According to a report in The Orange County Register, the fatal pedestrian accident occurred near the intersection of Euclid Street and Warner Avenue in Fountain Valley. Police said the man in the wheelchair was trying to cross Euclid westbound along Warner Avenue when he was first struck by a minivan traveling north on Euclid and then hit by an SUV traveling north.
The man was pronounced dead at the scene. The drivers of both vehicles stopped at the scene and cooperated with investigators. Officials determined neither of the drivers was under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. It was not immediately known whether the pedestrian was in a crosswalk or if he was crossing on a red or green light when the collisions occurred. The investigation is ongoing.
We offer our deepest condolences to the family members of this deceased victim. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Wheelchairs and Pedestrian Accidents
Based on this news report, the man was in a wheelchair and crossing the street when two vehicles hit him. Under California Vehicle Code Section 467 (b), the term “pedestrian” includes any person “who is operating a self-propelled wheelchair, motorized tricycle, or motorized quadricycle and, by reason of physical disability, is otherwise unable to move about as a pedestrian.”
Therefore, people in wheelchairs or mobility scooters are considered pedestrians under the law. Motorists are required to yield the right-of-way to individuals who are in wheelchairs or mobility scooters.
In cases where a driver’s negligence may have caused a pedestrian’s death, families of deceased victims may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral and burial costs, lost future income, pain and suffering, and loss of love, care and companionship.
A knowledgeable Orange County pedestrian accident lawyer will also be able to advise families whether a dangerous roadway caused the accident. If that’s the case, they may also have a claim against the governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway. Such claims must be filed within 180 days of the incident.