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UPDATE: Motorist Could Face Reckless Driving Charges in Crash that Electrocuted Two Good Samaritans


The driver of an SUV at the center of a crash that resulted in the electrocution of good Samaritans Irma Zamora, 40, and Stacey Schreiber, 39, could face reckless driving charges, the Los Angeles Daily News reports. The fatal Los Angeles car accident also led to six others including a police officer getting injured as a result of electric shock.

The freakish accident occurred the night of August 22, 2012 in the 12000 block of Magnolia Avenue in Valley Village when an SUV crashed through a stop sign and into a light pole and sheared a fire hydrant creating an electrically charged pool of water. Zamora and Schreiber who rushed to help the trapped occupants of the SUV were electrocuted. Six others are in serious condition after suffering an electric shock.

Los Angeles police officials say detectives have presented a case for charging the driver with reckless driving and are investigating possible street racing allegations. It is not clear if the driver will be charged with misdemeanors or felonies. Police do not believe that alcohol or drugs were factors. Anyone with information on the crash is urged to call Detective William Bustos of the LAPD’s Valley Traffic Division at (818) 644-8000 or Officer Lisette Fuentes at (818) 644-8022.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends of Irma Zamora and Stacey Schreiber, who are grieving the loss of their loved ones. I also wish the injured victims the very best for a complete recovery.

Laws Relating to Speeding

Based on this news report, it appears that the teen driver of the SUV was speeding and driving recklessly at the time. Officials are also investigating allegations that he may have been street racing at the time the collision occurred. California Vehicle Code Section 22350 (Basic Speed Law) states: “No person shall drive a vehicle upon a highway at a speed greater than is reasonable or prudent having due regard for weather, visibility, the traffic and on surface and width of, the highway, and in no event at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property.”

Also, California Vehicle Code section 23109 (a) states: “A person shall not engage in a motor vehicle speed contest on a highway. As used in this section, a motor vehicle speed contest includes a motor vehicle race against another vehicle, a clock, or other timing device.”

Liability Issues

In this case, if the charges are upheld, in addition to facing criminal penalties, the driver of the SUV can also be held civilly liable for the injuries, damages and significant losses here. In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, families of deceased victims can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income and loss of love and companionship.

Injured victims can also seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization and rehabilitation costs. Injured victims and families of deceased victims in such cases would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that their legal rights and best interests are protected.

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