Two Killed in West Hollywood Pedestrian Accident
Two women were killed and a man was critically injured in an auto versus pedestrian accident in West Hollywood the night of March 31, 2009, according to a CBS News report. The fatal street intersection accident occurred at 7079 W. Fountain Avenue near La Brea Avenue on the border of West Hollywood and Los Angeles. Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department officials said that a 65-year-old woman, a 50-year-old woman and a 50-year-old man had entered a marked crosswalk to begin walking across the street when they were struck by a vehicle.
Police say three vehicles were possibly involved in this pedestrian accident, but they detained only the driver of the primary vehicle that hit the pedestrians. Officials say they are looking closely at images obtained from a red light camera at the intersection, which they hope will help determine who caused the fatal accident.
My heart goes out to the families and friends of the two women who were killed in this horrific Los Angeles County accident. I offer my deepest sympathies to everyone who knew and loved them. I also hope and pray that the injured man, who is fighting for his life, makes it through this ordeal. Please keep all the injured victims and their families in your prayers.
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2007 traffic accident statistics, there was one pedestrian accident fatality and 55 injuries relating to pedestrian versus vehicle accidents in West Hollywood. In Los Angeles County as a whole, 210 deaths and 5,095 injuries were reported in 2007 as a result of pedestrian accidents.
Based on this and other news reports, it appears to me that the driver of the vehicle may have been at fault. Other news reports said that the driver was traveling at a high rate of speed and hit the pedestrians after clipping another vehicle and veering out of control. I trust the images from the red light camera and eyewitness reports will be able to confirm that. California law requires that motorists stop at intersections – whether or not they have marked crosswalks – to yield right-of-way to pedestrians who are crossing the road.
California Vehicle Code Section 21950 states: “The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.” The same section also states that the driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked crosswalk “shall exercise all due care and shall reduce the speed of a vehicle or take any other action relating to the operating of the vehicle as necessary to safeguard the safety of the pedestrian.”
The families of the deceased victims as well as the injured victim here would be well-advised to immediately contact an experienced California pedestrian accident attorney, who will help determine the facts and hold the negligent parties accountable for their actions. The driver in this case may have been speeding, impaired or simply distracted. Whatever the case, an act of recklessness or negligence will make him accountable to the victims and their families. He should be held financially responsible for the damages and irreparable losses caused to these victims and their families.