Bernardino Rincon, 4, was killed in a Ventura car accident after an elderly driver caused a chain reaction crash the morning of November 30, 2009. The Ventura County Star reports that a car driven by 84-year-old Richard Levens struck the Rincon family’s minivan. Levens apparently first hit two cars that were stopped at a traffic light on westbound Santa Rosa Road and then spun out and hit the minivan, which was traveling eastbound. California Highway Patrol officials said the van then accelerated going on to the dirt shoulder of the roadway before striking a tree and rolling over. Bernardino, who was thrown from the vehicle and pinned underneath the van, died shortly afterward at a local hospital.
My heart goes out to the Rincon family for their heartbreaking loss. They describe Bernardino as a sweet boy who dreamed about going to Disneyland for the fifth birthday in February and loved to sing and dance with his mom. I offer my deepest condolences to this grieving family. Please keep them in your prayers.
What Caused the Fatal Injuries?
The news report presents two contradicting stories. CHP officials, who are investigating this car accident, say based on their preliminary findings, Bernardino was not buckled into a car seat. But his mother and sister say that he was safely restrained in a car seat before they started driving. Some family members wonder if the toddler unbuckled himself from the car seat just before the crash.
Investigating Product Liability Issues
If I were a family member, I would definitely want to find out what exactly happened here and whether Bernardino was killed as a result of a product defect. If Bernardino was in fact, buckled in – which his family members are sure of – they should look into whether the boy’s fatal injuries were the result of the car seat or seatbelt defects. In such cases, it would be a good idea to preserve the vehicle and the car seat so it can be examined thoroughly by an expert for any evidence of product defects. I trust officials are also looking into the actions of Levens, the elderly driver, and how or why he lost control of his car and slammed into the other vehicles.
Law enforcement officials often do not have the resources or the manpower to look carefully into auto product defect issues or the role that product defects play in car accidents. A reputed California personal injury lawyer, who has had significant success with product liability cases can help injured victims and their families find some answers in such heartbreaking car accident cases. Bernardino’s family members deserve those answers.
The Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys is not representing any of the parties mentioned in this article at the time the article was posted. Our information source is cited in the article. If you were involved in this incident or a similar incident and have questions as to your rights and options, call us or another reputable law firm. Do not act solely upon the information provided herein. Get a consultation. The best law firms will provide a free consultation. We provide a free, confidential consultation to not at fault persons named in this article. The free consultation offer extends to family members as well.