Last November, a Los Altos woman who was riding a bicycle in Portola Valley was struck and tragically killed when a truck hit her as she was traveling on property maintained by San Mateo County. The woman’s family has filed a wrongful death action against the driver of the truck and the company that employed him. But the driver and his employer are seeking to make sure that the County pays for any judgment against them that might be awarded to the woman’s family.
The defendants in the wrongful death case claim that the accident occurred due to a dangerous condition on public property. But it appears for now that the claim for indemnity could be rejected by the County, as they say the California Highway Patrol determined in their accident investigation that the truck driver made an unsafe turn and that the accident was not the result of any dangerous conditions. There were no eyewitnesses to the crash which occurred near an onramp to I-280.
On the other hand, the defendants in the wrongful death case say that the road is dangerous and poorly designed. And although a new investigation is still pending, there are some possible changes underway for the area in which the accident occurred. The County has met with the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition and has applied for grants to make changes to the area where the tragedy occurred.
As California injury lawyers, the attorneys of the California Injury Attorney Blog support all efforts to make roads safer for both bicyclists and motor vehicles. If we are to share the road, we must ensure the safety of all who travel, regardless of whether they are driving a truck, motorcycle, car or riding a bicycle.
We want to remind all readers to slow down, look carefully, and follow the law: do not use devices that can distract you from driving safely.
Hersh and Hersh has represented many clients dealing with injuries sustained in bicycle accidents, as well as motor vehicle accidents of all kinds. If you or a loved one have been injured in an accident, please contact us for a free consultation.