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Many California residents have been watching the latest developments from the Amtrak crash near Philadelphia with a great amount of interest. Now one of the conductors who had been at work on the train when it crashed and suffered tremendous injuries has chosen to file a suit against Amtrak, alleging negligence.

The man had been taking a break when the train derailed and crashed. The force of the collision broke the man's back, neck and both shoulders. The injured man was then forced to extricate himself from the debris. Although there were many Amtrak employees on the train, and at least one other has already filed a lawsuit against the rail company, he is the employee believed to have suffered the most severe injuries.

There is no clear consensus at the moment as to what caused the train to crash. The conductor of the train received a concussion in the incident and does not appear to remember what caused the train to suddenly accelerate. Both the Philadelphia Police Department and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have announced their intention to thoroughly investigate the accident.

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A 90-year-old San Jose man accidentally accelerated into a group of patrons and a person walking down the sidewalk outside a Palo Alto sidewalk cafe while trying to parallel park his 2010 Nissan Versa. The driver and all five accident victims were taken to Stanford Hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. The accident occurred at around 12:30 p.m. on July 31.

Two men, one in his 30s and the other in his 70s, had serious injuries that required surgery. A man in his 20s and a woman in her 60s suffered scrapes, and one man who was in his 30s had a laceration to the head. The driver also suffered an injury that was believed to be related to the airbag in his vehicle.

A section of University Avenue was closed for hours while the Specialized Traffic Accident Team investigated the scene. While it was unclear what caused the crash, police found no immediate signs that alcohol or drugs were involved. At the time of reporting, no charges or citations were levied against the driver.

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At approximately 2 a.m. on July 20, the California Highway Patrol started receiving reports of a wrong-way driver in Rancho Cucamonga on the 210 Freeway. A 28-year-old man from La Habra was traveling west in the eastbound lanes of the freeway. As CHP units began positioning themselves to intervene, the man's vehicle collided with a silver Hyundai that contained four people according to a captain with CHP.

The 60-year-old driver of the Hyundai and his 56-year-old wife were seriously injured in the accident and transported to Loma Linda University Medical Center. The wife had been released as of July 21. The two passengers in the backseat of the Hyundai, a 38-year-old woman from Fontana and a 52-year-old woman visiting from London, were killed in the crash. Both women were related to the driver and his wife. The wrong-way driver also died in the wreck.

Troopers suspected the group was returning from a family reunion. The entire eastbound side of the 210 Freeway near Day Boulevard was closed down until 7:30 a.m.

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Did you know that Route 5 in Orange County is considered to be one of the most travelled bridges in California, with more than 320,000 cars travelling across its deck every day? But as you can imagine, all of this use must be putting considerable strain on the bridge, which is why we pose this question to our readers: should Californians be worried about our state’s bridges?

The answer is yes and here’s why. According to the Federal Highway Administration, nearly one-tenth of the 607,380 bridges in the National Bridge Inventory are rated as structurally deficient. Although these bridges are not necessarily considered unsafe at this time, without significant maintenance or weight restrictions these bridges can pose a serious risk to the public. And as you may be able to imagine, a bridge collapse here in California would be a catastrophic accident.

An easy answer would be to simply provide the necessary funding to fix the structurally deficient bridges. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. That’s because the Highway Trust Fund, which is funded by revenue from the federal gas tax and pays for road and public transit projects such as bridge repair, is losing money at about $20 billion a year. Trustees say that because the gas tax has not been raised since 1993, the fund is no longer able to sufficiently match construction costs.

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Tagged in: accident

California is the home of Internet giant Google, and for anyone who hasn't heard by now, the company has a new cutting-edge product: Google Glass. The device is basically a wearable computer, with an image displayed in front of a person's eye as they wear the device like a set of eyeglasses. The device definitely sounds futuristic and fascinating, but there's trouble brewing.

According to a recent report, Google finds itself on the defensive in a number of states, as efforts are undertaken to make wearing the device while driving illegal. The main concern appears to be the perception that the device would be too much of a distraction for drivers, resulting in more car accidents that could cause serious injuries or even fatalities.

Because the device is so new, it can be hard to judge at this time whether or not the concerns are legitimate. Of course, in this day and age there are seemingly countless distractions for drivers, from more computer-oriented radios to the ever-present cell phone. Because of this, distracted drivers are now considered to be just as much of a concern on America's roadways as drunk drivers are.

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By now many of our San Jose readers have probably heard about the horrific accident that occurred on January 17 involving a teenage girl and a light-rail train. The teenage girl, a 14-year-old who was riding her bike on that morning, was struck by the train. She was left with serious injuries and died later that day. It appears that the girl may have been riding her bike to school when she was struck, as the accident occurred at about 7:30 a.m. that morning.

Any accident that involves a pedestrian or a cyclist is almost always assured to include a catastrophic or serious injury. This is because these collisions often involve a larger vehicle, like a truck or car, and a pedestrian or cyclist has next to no protection in such a crash.

There were few immediate details available about how this accident occurred. However, an investigation to be conducted by the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department was announced shortly after the accident. The train was impounded and the operator was ordered to submit to a drug screen.

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Tagged in: accident lawsuit

Most of our San Jose readers would probably expect a pedestrian who is struck by an automobile to suffer a catastrophic or serious injury. After all, a pedestrian has next to nothing in the way of protection should this type of collision occur. Unfortunately, that is exactly what happened recently, when a 2010 Toyota struck a 17-year-old boy near Highway 101.

According to the reports, the accident occurred at about 7:00 a.m. on January 9. The boy was reportedly crossing the road near an onramp to Highway 101 when he was struck by the Toyota, which was being driven by a 21-year-old man from Santa Clara. The 17-year-old boy was said to have suffered serious injuries, and he was quickly transported to a San Jose medical center for treatment.

There were no indications in the initial reports as to how this pedestrian accident occurred. Because it was early in the morning the relative darkness at the time could have played a role, or the weather conditions could have contributed. There was also some speculation that the 17-year-old boy may not have been precisely within the lines of a nearby crosswalk. But, although not conclusively ruled out, it appears that alcohol or drug use was not a contributing factor. The 21-year-old driver of the Toyota remained and the scene after the accident and it appears that he was cooperative with the authorities who began the accident investigation.

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Tagged in: accident lawsuit recover

Even though it's January and winter weather has been sweeping across the country in recent days, San Jose residents still like to get out and jog to get their exercise in. For some, it's all part of a New Year's resolution to get healthy. For others, it is simply part of the daily routine. But, for all joggers, there is probably very little concern that they won't make it back home to continue on with their day. Unfortunately for one jogger down the coast in Santa Ynez, that concern became a reality.

According to the reports, the jogger, a 45-year-old man, was struck by a 2005 minivan being driven by an 89-year-old woman. The collision occurred on December 27 in the early morning hours, at approximately 6:30 a.m. It appears that the man suffered serious injuries that prompted the emergency responders who came to the scene to request a helicopter ambulance for transportation. However, apparently it soon became clear to the responders that the man was not going to live, so they called off the helicopter. The man was transported to a hospital, but he died shortly after the accident.

The initial reports did not indicate whether or not the 89-year-old driver suffered any injuries in the collision. An investigation by the California Highway Patrol began immediately, but it will probably be some time before a conclusion as to what caused the accident can be reached. Alcohol or drug use seems to have been ruled out as a contributing factor.

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Tagged in: accident
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