California – January 4, 2021

A 30-year-old motorist from Lakeside crashed into a semi-truck parked on the shoulder of state Route 78 in Vista and suffered fatal injury according to the California Highway Patrol.  The driver of the 2019 Ford Fiesta veered off to the right onto the edge of the westbound lanes and could not stop in time to avoid hitting the parked truck.  The driver of the truck had pulled off the roadway to check his tires before the fatal crash occurred.  A California accident attorney can answer questions regarding options for damage compensation to cover funeral and burial costs as well as survival benefits for loved ones.

Investigate to determine fault.

While it is true that someone is injured, or dies from a truck accident approximately every 16 minutes in the United States, not all of those accidents are the fault of the truck driver and experienced truck accident attorneys can initiate investigations to determine accident fault. The very size of a truck, even traveling at a low and safe speed, can cause injury, or death.  Reduced visibility when cars are changing lanes can cause unsafe roadway conditions, and occasions when drivers pull off to shoulders of roadways to use them for passing, but continue moving at a high rate of speed, even if they are planning on stopping.  Commercial Motor Vehicles must carry additional liability insurance required by the Federal Government regulations to address larger insurance claims for catastrophic injury and death occurrences.

Insurance.

California is considered a fault, or tort state with regard to auto accidents. In California, a person must be found to be responsible for causing the accident before that person’s insurance will pay for damages. The no fault portion of a driver’s insurance may have a death benefit rider that should be utilized for immediate expenses surrounding funeral and burial expenses.  A California accident lawyer can review a driver’s policy to collect information to secure immediate payments until insurance claims and/or legal actions can be processed.  California follows the pure comparative negligence law. This allocates fault between parties and will reduce any recovery accordingly. Each party’s negligence is compared to the others and damages are awarded according to percentage of fault.

Statute of Limitations.

In California, the statute of limitations for motor vehicle accidents is two years. It is the same as that for other personal injury cases. The two-year time period starts on the date of the accident, unless the accident resulted in the death of the victim.  In California, the statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit is two years from the date of death. However, there is a crucial exception to this statute of limitations. Known as the “discovery rule,” the exception applies in cases where the cause of death was not apparent when the decedent passed, but is later discovered.  Personal injury attorneys can guide victim actions in accordance with these timelines.

Hire an attorney.

Seek legal counsel immediately after a car crash involving a big rig that results in fatal injury. An experienced attorney who is familiar with trucking industry and carrier laws in California can be contacted  at the Law Offices of Jeffrey E. Estes & Associates as a viable resource toward comprehensive damage recovery.

 

Jeffrey E. Estes & Associates, a Professional Law Corporation

501 West Broadway, Suite 1650

San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619-233-8021

Fax: 619-233-3730

 

 

Sources:

https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/public-safety/story/2020-01-04/one-dead-in-vista-crash

https://www.statista.com/statistics/191544/fatal-large-truck-crashes-in-the-us/

https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displaySection.xhtml?lawCode=VEH&sectionNum=20001

https://dot.ca.gov/programs/traffic-operations/legal-truck-access

https://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?SID=20c89d91b26cb602b60fe10d46411dd5&mc=true&node=pt49.5.390&rgn=div5

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