Saul Lopez, 15, a 10th grader at Vaughn Charter School was killed in a bicycle accident in Pacoima. According to a news report in the Los Angeles Daily News, the fatal collision occurred the morning of November 15, 2016 at the corner of Glenoaks Boulevard and Vaughn Street. Lopez was riding his bike to his school when a 2016 Dodge Ram pickup truck, which was southbound on Glenoaks Boulevard collided with a 2006 Chevy pickup headed east on Vaughn Street.
The impact sent both trucks in a southbound direction where the Dodge struck the boy, who was riding west in the south crosswalk at the intersection. Lopez was pinned under the Dodge. It is not clear which truck had the right of way. Both motorists stopped at the scene and cooperated with police and neither was arrested. Anyone who witnessed the crash is asked to contact Valley Traffic Division at 818-644-8000.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family members and friends of Saul Lopez for their tragic loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2013 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were 17 fatalities and 2,342 injuries that occurred as a result of bicycle accidents in the city of Los Angeles. Countywide, 36 people died and 4,646 were injured due to bicycle accidents during the same year.
Causes and Compensation Issues
Based on this news report, it appears that the the two pickup trucks collided at the intersection and that the force of the collision caused one of the trucks to strike the teenager and his bicycle. There are still a number of questions here. Did one of the trucks run a red light or fail to yield the right of way at the intersection? Did alcohol or drugs play a part? Did excessive speed or distracted driving cause or contribute to this fatal accident?
The at-fault party in this case can be held liable for Lopez’s wrongful death. In such families of deceased victims can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost future income, funeral costs, pain and suffering and loss of love and companionship. Victims’ families would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyer who will stay abreast of the official investigation and help ensure that the at-fault parties are held accountable.