Update: Priscilla Vallejo, 13, Tragically Killed While on Bicycle
Our deepest condolences, thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Priscilla Vallejo.
Priscilla Vallejo, 13 years old, was tragically struck and killed while riding her bicycle this morning in Santa Ana at the intersection of West Edinger Avenue and South Center Street. The accident occurred at around 7:30am
WHO ELSE WAS INVOLVED?
Reports indicate that a Santa Ana Unified School District driver was driving a large work truck when the truck struck Vallejo when it made a right turn on westbound Edinger Avenue. The driver did stay at the scene and spoke with police officers after the incident.
WHAT CAUSED THE ACCIDENT?
It appears that Vallejo was riding her bicycle through the crosswalk when the truck made an unsafe right hand turn. It is unclear as to why the truck driver didn’t see Vallejo or why he made the right hand turn without keeping a proper lookout and making sure it was safe to do so.
California Vehicle Code 22107 states that “a driver must use reasonable care when turning.”
The accident happened right outside of a nearby school where summer classes are currently in session. During the school year, crossing guards protect pedestrians and cyclist at the intersection. Unfortunately, crossing guards are not present during the summer.
As in all wrongful death cases, all contributing factors must be investigated and all those accountable must be held responsible. A major factor in this particular investigation should be to determine whether the intersection of West Edinger Avenue and South Center Street was dangerous at the time of this unfortunate incident. A history of accidents could show that the intersection is not safe in its current state.
WHAT CAN THE FAMILY OF A WRONGFUL DEATH VICTIM DO?
“This is an unthinkable incident that never should have happened. A tragic loss that could have been and should have been prevented. A full investigation into all potential factors should immediately be taken and those who are responsible should be held accountable,” said Attorney Reza Torkzadeh.
In California, the wrongful death statute determines who has the ability to bring a lawsuit for the death of a loved one caused by negligence. The parents of a child and siblings of a child clearly have standing to bring a claim. The family should consult with an attorney immediately about potential other claimants and the immediate preservation of evidence.
IMMEDIATE PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE
The most important decision after such a tragic loss is making sure that ALL important evidence is preserved and not disturbed in anyway. For example, the vehicle and the bicycle should immediately be located and preserved for examination by experts. Evidence preservation orders should immediately be sent to keep any potential critical evidence in safekeeping. Often times if this information is not properly kept it is very difficult to get weeks or months from now.
The Torkzadeh Law Firm is an Award Winning law firm that exclusively represents families of wrongful death cases throughout Southern California. If a loved one has been killed in an accident, contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation (888) 845-9696.