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drunk driving accident, San Jose personal injury attorneyDrunk drivers continue to cause thousands of accidents every year, in spite of harsh consequences and aggressive law enforcement practices. Often a drunk driving accident results in catastrophic injuries that last a lifetime. Tragically, some victims will not even survive the accident. Because drunk driving is caused by an illegal act, victims of drunk driving accidents may be able to seek punitive damages from the drunk drivers.

What Are Punitive Damages?

Punitive damages are a special kind of damages that are not available in every personal injury case. Punitive damages are designed to punish actions that go beyond simple negligence. These damages are supposed to help deter people from making the same kinds of dangerous choices in the future. In order to be awarded punitive damages, you will need to show that the driver acted with a conscious disregard for the safety of others.

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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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As most California drivers know, some days are better than others for driving. In general, many of these days are associated with national holidays or other days where it can be expected that there will be more drivers on the road. However, some of the days may be more unexpected than others.

National holidays are always going to be more dangerous for drivers than other days. For example, on Memorial Day weekend, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that there are approximately 400 driving fatalities every year. New Year's Day, St. Patrick's Day and July 4th also sees a number of fatalities. For these three holidays, alcohol consumption appears to be a leading factor in any car accidents that occur. Thanksgiving and Christmas are also dangerous due to the number of drivers on the road. Many drivers during these two holidays also often drive while stressed, which potentially leads to more aggressive driving.

Other days where driving can be more dangerous may be more unexpected. For example, the start of daylight saving time, when many drivers lose sleep, the number of collisions rises. Collisions also rise on Black Friday and NFL game days. This may be due to the number of vehicles on the road or to aggressive driving. Finally, the number of car accidents appears to rise on Friday the 13th, though it is not known why.

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On May 1, it was announced that a wrongful death lawsuit was filed against former Olympian Bruce Jenner. Jenner was accused of causing a car accident in California that left a 69-year-old woman dead.

In the accident, which occurred on Feb. 7, Jenner was driving a Cadillac Escalade while hauling an off-road vehicle on a trailer when he attempted to steer around vehicles that had slowed down in front of him. He collided with a Prius that was directly in front of him. The impact from this collision caused the Prius to be pushed into a Lexus, which was being driven by the 69-year-old woman. The Lexus was pushed into oncoming traffic, where it was struck by a Hummer.

The wrongful death lawsuit was filed by the woman's two step-children, who claimed that they sustained serious damages. The amount of compensation they were seeking was not known. It was argued that that Jenner was driving negligently, which allegedly resulted in the crash, though videos of the incident reportedly showed that Jenner was not using a cellphone at the time the incident occurred. Jenner was not charged in the incident.

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An accident involving a motorcycle and a passenger car resulted in the death of two people on April 12. The fatal motor vehicle accident occurred in the San Fernando Valley at about 11 p.m. According to police, both the motorcyclist and the passenger car driver were declared dead at the scene of the accident.

Police say a 30-year-old man riding a motorcycle was traveling at excessive speeds near the intersection of Reseda Boulevard and Collins Street. The motorcyclist collided with the driver's side window of a Honda Accord while the 60-year-old driver was starting to make a left turn. As a result of the impact, the motorcycle landed approximately 50 feet away, and the motorcyclist crashed through the car window.

A Los Angeles Police Department detective said that when the motorcyclist went through the driver's side window, the woman who was driving the Honda was impacted. The motorcyclist ended up on the passenger side. While investigators were looking into the details of the collision, the intersection was shut down until early the next morning. According to an LAPD detective, another fatal motorcycle accident involving speed had occurred in the same area only a couple days before.

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On April 7, a San Jose man was killed in a car accident that may have been caused by a drunk driver. According to authorities, the man was driving in the northbound lanes of Highway 101 in a Ford Taurus when a 2011 Nissan pickup rear-ended him. The pickup then reportedly left the scene of the crime by taking the Great America Parkway exit. The collision left the Taurus stalled on the highway.

Following the initial accident, the driver of a 2008 Ford pickup came across the stalled vehicle; however, he was unable to avoid striking the Taurus. The impact of the collision caused the Taurus to travel across multiple lanes of the freeway before striking a wall. The vehicle then caught fire. The vehicle was reportedly fully engulfed in flames when the rescue authorities arrived at the scene, killing the 37-year-old driver.

The vehicle that reportedly caused the accident was recovered at a nearby IHOP by local authorities. It has sustained major damage to its front end and tires. Once the local authorities contacted the State Police, the vehicle was ultimately linked to the hit-and-run accident. The driver was taken into police custody where he was charged with manslaughter and DUI.

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A 44-year-old man was killed and a woman was critically injured in a two-vehicle accident near Santa Cruz on March 28. The crash occurred at approximately 2 p.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.

Authorities said a 1991 Ford F-150 pickup truck was driving northbound on Empire Grade Road north of Llama Ranch Road when it crossed the double yellow lines into southbound traffic and struck an oncoming 2001 Chevrolet van near the north entrance to the University of California at Santa Cruz.

The driver of the pickup truck, who lived in the unincorporated area of Aptos, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The driver of the van, a 20-year-old woman, suffered critical and life-threatening injuries. She was airlifted to a nearby trauma center for treatment. Authorities said the pickup truck was traveling at a high rate of speed at the time of the crash, but the van was traveling within the posted speed limit.

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Distracted driving impacts the risk of auto accidents regardless of the age of the driver, but a study has indicated that teenage drivers may be dismissing the risks associated with multitasking while driving. Though the study suggested that teenagers recognize that texting and driving or driving while under the influence of alcohol could cause an accident, many did not observe the same potential for danger in other behaviors.

According to one report, any behavior that causes a driver to look away from the road could be considered a form of distracted driving, including talking on a cellphone, eating, changing radio stations or actively using a GPS system. The findings of the research stated that 27 percent of the adolescents admitted to changing clothes while driving. Some claimed to have applied make-up or tended to a homework assignment. A lack of available resources for educating youths on what constitutes distracted driving could be one of the contributing factors to this trend.

Survey results indicated that the awareness campaigns regarding the risks of texting and driving have influenced adolescent drivers, suggesting a lower number of occurrences than previous studies. Implementing educational material about multitasking behind the wheel in driver education programs for teenagers might be instrumental in bringing awareness to other types of distracted driving. In an effort to demonstrate how distractions can affect basic tasks, the survey participants were asked to take a course that provided opportunities to observe how multitasking affects driving.

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A head-on collision on Highway 1 near Lompoc left one man dead and another seriously hurt on March 10. The crash happened at approximately 6:30 a.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.

Authorities said a man driving to work in a Toyota Tacoma drifted over the double-yellow line and collided head-on with a Chevrolet Silverado just south of Jalama Road. The Toyota driver, a 32-year-old man from Lynwood, died at the scene. The Chevrolet driver, a 33-year-old man from Lompoc, was trapped in his vehicle following the accident. A representative of the Santa Barbara County Fire Department reported on Twitter that it took 30 minutes to free him. He was transported to Cottage Hospital with major injuries.

CHP closed the southbound lanes of Highway 1 near Jalama Road for several hours as they investigated the scene. The accident remains under investigation.

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The California Highway Patrol and Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office were on the scene of a deadly accident that occurred in the community of Aptos at about 8 p.m. on March 1. Alcohol bottles were found at the scene of the crash, and DUI is a possible factor in a fatal head-on collision in which the 22-year-old driver of a Mercedes was killed. There were seven people in the vehicle designed to seat five, and none of the occupants were wearing a seat belt according to authorities. A 19-year-old woman and 18-year-old man riding in the front seat along with a 16-year-old girl riding in the back seat were all pronounced dead at the scene.

The accident happened when the westbound driver of the Mercedes was allegedly driving recklessly on Freedom Boulevard. He suddenly crossed into oncoming traffic and collided head-on with a Ford F-150 pickup driven by a 56-year-old man. According to a spokesperson for the CHP, the driver suffered severe injuries and remained hospitalized at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center the following day. There were no passengers in the pickup truck.

Also hospitalized in critical condition were an 18-year-old year-old female and a 21-year-old male passenger from the Mercedes. A third survivor from that vehicle is a 17-year-old female. She suffered the least injuries in the wreck but remained a patient at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. Authorities involved in the accident investigation had not been able to get any information from the girl regarding the circumstances surrounding the wreck.

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Individuals who have been involved in a car accident are obligated to stop and call the proper authorities. If anyone involved in the accident has been injured, someone must make an effort to provide reasonable assistance. This may include calling 911, taking that person to the hospital or rendering first aid. To ensure that safety of those involved in the accident and other motorists, it may be worthwhile to place warning cones or flares at the scene.

Although state law says that those involved should render aid to injured car accident victims, they should only do so under certain circumstances. For example, it may only be safe to pull someone from a car before it becomes engulfed in flames. However, if the car is already on fire, it may be more prudent to simply call 911 and wait for help. Outside help may consist of first responders or it may involve other passing motorists.

Regardless of whether there are injuries in the accident, it may be required that each driver exchange his or her information. Each driver should be able to see the other driver's registration and driver's license. It may be prudent to take down that information as well as the name, age and address of passengers in each car as well as any witnesses to the crash.

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The woman driver of a blue Honda SUV who died in an accident with a pickup truck on Feb. 6 was not immediately identified at the time of the accident. The California Highway Patrol reported that the fatal crash took place on Highway 101 near Gilroy.

It was south of Masten Avenue where a white pickup truck left the road and went on to the shoulder. The driver swerved in an attempt to get back on the road and T-boned a Honda SUV in the left lane. Both vehicles flipped over and finally stopped on the center highway divider, according to the CHP report.

Although the woman died, the driver of the truck survived. He went to an area hospital for the treatment of minor injuries. He did not appear to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol, but the CHP continues to look into the cause of the accident.

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A fiery crash in Fremont resulted after a 22-year-old woman drove north on Interstate Highway 880 in the southbound lanes. The California Highway Patrol received a report of the driver going the wrong way shortly before the call about an accident came in.

The woman's 1999 Volvo hit a Chevrolet Silverado truck on the interstate near Thornton Avenue. Her car was burning when authorities arrived on scene. The acting deputy chief for the Fremont Fire Department reported that firefighters were unable to rescue the woman who was trapped in her vehicle. She later died. The accident report stated that she was from Santa Clara, but her identity was withheld so her family could be notified.

Rescue workers did manage to remove the three passengers of the pickup truck that was also threatened by the burning car. The passengers had major injuries. The CHP continues to investigate the accident. Where or how the woman entered the highway on the wrong side has not yet been determined. Investigators have not eliminated the possibility of drugs or alcohol contributing to the driving error.

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A vehicle drove into a Macy's department store in Newark on Jan. 14, and four people were injured in the accident. The store was evacuated after the crash occurred. At the time of the report, authorities were still investigating the incident.

A representative of the Alameda County Fire Department reported that the accident took place around 4:50 p.m. at the NewPark Mall. A vehicle being driven by a 63-year-old woman allegedly waited outside of the store while a 12-year-old boy exited the vehicle to use a mall restroom. While the reason for the accident was unknown at the time of the report, the vehicle then jolted forward and went about 50 feet inside the Macy's.

The driver and two men shopping inside the store all suffered injuries, though the extent of their injuries was unknown, and a man who was in front of the store on a sidewalk went to a hospital with critical injuries. Another woman and a 10-year-old girl were passengers in the vehicle, but they were unharmed in the collision. At least two witnesses reported panic attacks after the crash.

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Posted on in Car Accidents

In Fair Oaks, a town near Sacramento, California, a 2003 Subaru Outback going north on San Juan Avenue was hit head-on by a 1932 Buick LeSabre going south. The Buick crossed over the centerline and hit the Subaru head on, causing critical injuries. The accident occurred at about 1:30 a.m. on Friday.

The Buick was engulfed in flames by the time authorities arrived on scene, and three of its occupants had already died. A local resident pulled two other victims out of the Buick but one of them, a woman, died at the scene. The other woman was taken to the hospital in critical condition. The driver of the Subaru is in serious condition. A CHP spokesman stated that several of the passengers were not wearing seat belts, and the accident is difficult to investigate because things were tossed around inside the vehicle.

The investigation is ongoing and it is suspected that speed may have been a factor. Crash scene investigators will need to determine if road conditions, driver fatigue or distractions contributed to the accident. It was determined that the driver of the Subaru was not under the influence of alcohol, and a toxicology test will be performed on the other driver to determine if alcohol consumption contributed to the crash.

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On Dec. 24, a United States Postal Service truck became involved in an accident on California's popular coastline highway, State Highway 1, according to authorities. Three individuals were hospitalized with injuries after the wreck.

According to the California Highway Patrol, the USPS truck was traveling south on Highway 1 near Half Moon Bay at approximately 11:40 a.m., and that is when, for reasons not immediately ascertained, the postal truck and a northbound Subaru came into contact with each other. The speed and weight of the crash generated enough violence to leave behind wreckage across both directions of the highway and to require the roadway's closure for more than an hour. It was not certain immediately after the accident if either of the two drivers involved might face criminal charges connected with the event.

Authorities reported that USPS truck driver suffered a serious head injury in the wreck. Emergency crews transported the man to Stanford Hospital via helicopter. Two occupants of the Subaru were also airlifted to the Stanford facility. While authorities indicated that the nature of the injuries they both suffered was major, the extent of the two individuals' bodily damage was not immediately reported.

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Authorities reported that a Dec. 14 accident in Alhambra involved three vehicles and a large group of pedestrians, resulting in 11 individuals hospitalized with injuries. One of the injured individuals required treatment in the intensive care unit, reportedly.

According to the Alhambra Police Department, the accident occurred near Fremont Avenue and Poplar Boulevard. Allegedly, a 28-year-old Los Angeles man driving a truck north crossed into the southbound lane of the roadway and crashed into two parked vehicles, both of which were occupied. The momentum of the moving truck carried the vehicles onto the sidewalk and struck a group of pedestrians who were reportedly admiring Christmas lights in the residential neighborhood. The driver of the truck was detained on suspicion of drunk driving and booked into custody. The investigation is ongoing, officials said.

Besides a full and completed investigation, this particular case must be adjudicated officially and in the appropriate arena to know for sure the true story behind this incident. Yet, it does evoke the horrific and seemingly interminable consequences that oftentimes accompany drunk-driving wrecks. When a drunk driver does in fact injure others, especially defenseless pedestrians, during the course of an accident, both the driver and the victim may face a future filled with consequences stemming from the incident. Whereas the driver may face criminal penalties, like fines and jail time, the victim may suffer lingering physical ailments, chronic pain and financial ruin on account of accident-related injuries.

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The California Highway Patrol confirmed that three people died as the result of two separate Nov. 28 accidents. One incident claimed the lives of a 23-year-old man and a 56-year-old woman, reportedly. In an earlier wreck, a 60-year-old man was killed when his car crossed the centerline and struck a gardening truck, authorities said.

Law enforcement officials indicated that the 23-year-old man in the later event was driving recklessly at the time of the crash, which occurred on Grapefruit Boulevard in Thermal. After crashing into a concrete barrier, the man purportedly crossed the centerline of the roadway and collided head-on with another vehicle. CHP reportedly suspects that alcohol played a role in the collision.

In the earlier accident, which occurred on County Club Drive, the passengers in the gardening truck did not report suffering any serious injuries. The 60-year-old man was driving a Honda with one passenger, who did suffer injuries in the accident. The passenger was hospitalized for injuries that officials depicted as moderate.

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Two people were killed and one was injured in a three-vehicle wrong-way accident on Nov. 23. The wreck happened on Highway 101 in Marian County near the Redwood Sanitary Landfill around midnight. Road crews shut down the road for several hours after the crash as they cleared the debris.

According to the California Highway Patrol, a man driving a 1995 Toyota Camry was headed north down the southbound lane when the Toyota collided head-on with a 2013 Nissan Sentra. The Nissan had two occupants, a male driver and a female passenger. After the Nissan was struck by the Toyota, it was struck again by a 2006 Dodge Ram.

The driver of the Nissan was killed, and the passenger was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. The man driving the Toyota was also killed. The driver of the Dodge pickup was uninjured. Investigators believe alcohol played a role in the accident.

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California Highway Patrol said a tour bus that was already involved in a minor accident earlier in the day left the road and flipped over on Nov. 23, killing one passenger and hurting 30 others. The second crash happened at approximately 7:30 a.m. about 100 miles south of the Oregon border.

After rolling over, the 1996 Vanhool bus came to a rest on its roof. One passenger, a 33-year-old Parlier man, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. Approximately two dozen other passengers were taken to local hospitals for treatment. Three were critically injured, three were seriously hurt and the rest suffered minor injuries.

According to authorities, the bus, which is owned by Yellow Arrow LLC in Othello, Washington, also hit a Denny's restaurant in Red Bluff earlier in the day. No one was hurt in that accident.

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