According to reporting from the Stockton Record, a local teenager suffered serious injuries in a crash with a box truck. The accident happened in Stockton. It is a reminder of the risk that large trucks pose to pedestrians—especially young people. Here, our Stockton commercial truck accident attorney explains what we know about this incident and provides an overview of pedestrian accident laws in California.
Teenager Hurt in Collision With Box Truck in Stockton
A teenage girl was seriously injured following a collision with a box truck near the intersection of Thornton Road and Wagner Heights Road in Stockton. The incident, which occurred around 1 p.m., prompted a police investigation that led to the closure of Thornton Road. The victim’s identity and whether she is a student at one of the nearby schools remain undisclosed. Witness accounts suggest frequent pedestrian activity in the area. The condition of the girl, who was rushed to the hospital, was unknown as of late Thursday afternoon, though the injuries were believed to be significant. The pedestrian truck accident is still under investigation by the Stockton Police Department.
Trucks Pose a High Risk to Pedestrians
Trucks present a significant hazard to pedestrians due to their size, blind spots, and longer braking distances. Their height and bulk can obscure other road users, while their extended stopping distances can result in delayed responses to sudden pedestrian movements. Furthermore, a collision with a truck often results in severe injuries due to the substantial disparity in size and weight. Even though many safety measures exist, such as crosswalks and pedestrian signals, the risk remains high. It is absolutely imperative that truck drivers and trucking companies remain vigilant. Pedestrian safety should be a high priority in California.
An Overview of Pedestrian Accident Claims in California
Were you or your child involved in a pedestrian crash in Stockton? It is imperative that you have an understanding of how your case will be handled under state law.
Here are some key points to know about pedestrian accident laws in California:
- All Pedestrian Collisions Should Be Reported to the Police: State law requires the reporting of all injury crashes. In the aftermath of a pedestrian collision, it is crucial to report the incident to the police. Be sure you report the accident to the Stockton Police Department or another law enforcement agency. The report can serve as a valuable piece of evidence when pursuing a personal injury claim.
- California is an At-Fault State for Pedestrian Accidents: California follows an “at-fault” system when it comes to pedestrian accidents. Put another way, the party who is determined to be at fault for causing the pedestrian accident is responsible for any resulting damages. A driver is not automatically at fault for a pedestrian crash. All pedestrian crashes in Stockton, CA should be thoroughly investigated to determine exactly what went wrong. In practice, the at-fault party’s insurance company is typically liable for covering these costs, which can include medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
- Comparative Negligence Can Impact a Claim: California operates under a “pure comparative negligence” system, including for pedestrian accidents. Under this rule, a pedestrian’s compensation may be reduced if they are found partially at fault for their accident. As a straightforward example, imagine that if a pedestrian is found to be 30 percent at fault, their potential recovery will be reduced by 30 percent as well. Thus, if they suffered $100,000 in damages, they would only be able to recover $70,000 through their pedestrian accident claim. While this system allows injured parties to recover even if they share some of the blame, it also highlights the importance of proving the other party’s negligence to maximize compensation.
- The Statute of Limitations is Two Years: In California, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims, including pedestrian accident claims, is two years. This means that a victim has two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. If a claim is not filed within this time frame, it is likely to be dismissed by the court, and the victim may lose their right to seek compensation. Some narrow exceptions exist for minors and in cases where injuries are not immediately discoverable. Still, you do not want to delay: Consult with a Stockon pedestrian accident lawyer right away after a serious crash.
Specialized Rules and Regulations for Minor Injury Claims in California
Personal injury claims involving minors in California operate under unique rules and regulations. When a minor, defined as an individual under 18, sustains an injury due to another party’s negligence, the minor’s parent or legal guardian typically must act on their behalf to seek compensation. Indeed, a minor cannot directly file a personal injury claim on their own. Their parents or guardians should be involved in the process.
Still, that does not mean that minors have fewer rights. They can still absolutely pursue full and fair financial compensation for their damages, including for medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, pain, and suffering, as well as any future costs related to the injury.
As a general rule a personal injury settlement reached by a parent or guardian on behalf of a minor will need to be approved by a California court. The law dictates that a court needs to confirm that a proposed settlement on behalf of a minor is actually in their best interests. A Stockton personal injury lawyer can help you and your family navigate this procedural requirement.
Note: California law extends the statute of limitations for minors. Instead of the standard two-year period, minors have two years from the date of their 18th birthday to initiate a claim.
Call Our Stockton Truck Accident Attorney for a Free Case Review
At Redkey Gordon Law Corp, our Stockton commercial truck accident lawyers advocate tirelessly to protect the rights and the interests of people who need legal help the most. If you or your family member was hurt in a pedestrian crash with a large truck, please do not hesitate to contact us today for your free consultation. We handle truck accident claims in Stockton and all across the region.