San Jose motorist causes death of elderly pedestrian

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Pedestrians are always at risk near busy roadways because they have little protection when cars and trucks speed past them. Just because traffic laws require that drivers yield to pedestrians crossing roads, sometimes motorists neglect to do so, often resulting in catastrophic injuries or death to the victim.

During a recent accident in San Jose, an 81-year-old woman was hit and killed by a car as she crossed a road at daybreak. Police report that there was no indication that the 50-year-old driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Drivers must exercise reasonable care to avoid accidents and failure to do so is considered negligence. Some common instances of negligence include:

  • Distractions while driving
  • Inattention to weather or traffic conditions
  • Failing to obey traffic lights or signals
  • Failure to use turn signals or look for pedestrians in crosswalks
  • Speeding
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol

While people suffering from accident injuries and families of victims of fatal accidents cannot ever be compensated for their loss, a wrongful death action can be brought by the family members of anyone killed due to negligence of another. A surviving spouse or child can often bring a wrongful death claim against a person or a company, whichever is responsible for the death, and may help to recover the costs of medical and funeral expenses as well as other financial losses.

Source: Mercury News, "San Jose: 81-year-old woman struck and killed crossing street," Mark Gomez, Sept. 12, 2012

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