Armando Hernandez, a 31-year-old Antioch man, died in a multi-vehicle accident on Interstate Highway 680 in Concord on November 8, 2008. According to an article in the San Jose Mercury News, two mattresses that apparently came off someone’s vehicle caused the fatal three-car pileup. Hernandez was driving his Mitsubishi Diamante just south of Concord Avenue when he swerved to avoid the mattresses, lost control of his vehicle and crashed into the center divider.
The impact of the 11/8/08 crash caused the Mitsubishi’s electrical system to fail, leaving Hernandez to navigate without headlights. Hernandez also possibly crashed into a Ford Mustang whose driver was also swerving to avoid the mattresses on the highway. Moments after the collision, a Cadillac crashed into the almost invisible Mitsubishi, according to California Highway Patrol officials. Apparently, Hernandez took off his seatbelt to get out of his car when he was ejected and killed, CHP officials said. The four occupants of the Cadillac suffered minor injuries while the two people in the Mustang were uninjured.
I offer my deepest condolences to the family of Armando Hernandez who died in this tragic and unfortunate accident. Obviously he was in the wrong place at the wrong time and was a victim of someone else’s negligence.
Unfortunately, freeway debris is a common sight on California’s freeways. The California State Department of Transportation (Caltrans) estimates that 140,000 cubic yards of debris is dumped on California’s roadways each year. Highway debris has caused 155 California traffic accident deaths in the last two years.
In California, a motorist can be fined for dropping anything other than live bird feathers or water from their vehicles onto a roadway. In addition to fines, they can be held civilly and criminally responsible for the consequences of that debris on our roadways. Our law firm has successfully handled many major injury and fatality accident cases caused by highway debris.
A person injured in an auto accident caused by highway debris has a right to be compensated for their injuries not only from the person who drops the debris on the roadway, but also from their own “uninsured/underinsured motorist” provision of their automobile insurance policy. If the person responsible for the debris on the highway is never identified or found, the uninsured motorist provision of an auto insurance policy had provisions to compensate the injured victim of the family of a deceased auto accident victim.
A knowledgeable California personal injury attorney will also tell you how your motor vehicle insurance policy will apply to a roadway debris accident. I’d urge the family of Armando Hernandez to consult with an experienced California auto accident attorney, who will help hold the negligent parties responsible and help them secure the compensation they rightfully deserve.