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Articles Posted in Motor Vehicle Accidents

Legal news and analysis regarding California law on motor vehicle accident and injury claims.

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Road-Construction-Accident-Attorneys-CaliforniaIn California, road construction zones can be dangerous to motorists and construction crews. While most accidents that happen in road construction zones are caused by motorists, it is possible for the road construction companies to be responsible. In

Shipp v. Western Engineering, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. C087371, the California Court of Appeals considered a case in which a motorist alleged that the road construction contractor owed him a duty of care to safely control traffic traveling through a construction zone.[1]

Factual and procedural background

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California-Car-Accident-AttorneysPeople in California must use reasonable caution when they drive to try to prevent accidents and injuries to others traveling around them. However, when drivers are confronted with sudden and unexpected dangers, they are not expected to use the same degree of caution that they would in calmer situations. In Abdulkadhim v. Wu, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. B298091, the court reviewed a case in which a man was forced to suddenly change lanes to avoid colliding with a stopped vehicle on the interstate when the man traveling behind him subsequently collided with the stopped vehicle.{1]

Factual and procedural background

Jasim Al-Kuraishi was driving his vehicle on Interstate !0 near Rosemead on Oct. 11, 2014, at 1:00 am. He was traveling in the westbound lane going approximately 70 mph. Tommy Wu was traveling in front of Al-Kuraishi in the same direction when Wu saw a vehicle that was stopped in the lane in front of him about 20 to 30 car lengths ahead. Wu changed lanes by moving into the high-occupancy vehicle lane and passed the stopped vehicle while traveling between 40 and 50 mph. After he passed the vehicle and was about 400 feet in front of it, he saw Al-Kuraishi’s vehicle crash into the stopped car in his rearview mirror. The force of the collision caused Al-Kuraishi’s vehicle to travel into a different lane, and his car was struck by a second vehicle in that lane that was also traveling around 70 mph. Wu stopped his vehicle after witnessing the collision and called 911. When the paramedics arrived, Al-Kuraishi was pronounced dead at the accident scene.

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California-Car-Accident-AttorneysPeople in California must use reasonable caution when they drive to try to prevent accidents and injuries to others traveling around them. However, when drivers are confronted with sudden and unexpected dangers, they are not expected to use the same degree of caution that they would in calmer situations. In Abdulkadhim v. Wu, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. B298091, the court reviewed a case in which a man was forced to suddenly change lanes to avoid colliding with a stopped vehicle on the interstate when the man traveling behind him subsequently collided with the stopped vehicle.{1]

Factual and procedural background

Jasim Al-Kuraishi was driving his vehicle on Interstate 10 near Rosemead CA on Oct. 11, 2014, at 1:00 am. He was traveling in the westbound lane going approximately 70 mph. Tommy Wu was traveling in front of Al-Kuraishi in the same direction when Wu saw a vehicle that was stopped in the lane in front of him about 20 to 30 car lengths ahead. Wu changed lanes by moving into the high-occupancy vehicle lane and passed the stopped vehicle while traveling between 40 and 50 mph. After he passed the vehicle and was about 400 feet in front of it, he saw Al-Kuraishi’s vehicle crash into the stopped car in his rearview mirror. The force of the collision caused Al-Kuraishi’s vehicle to travel into a different lane, and his car was struck by a second vehicle in that lane that was also traveling around 70 mph. Wu stopped his vehicle after witnessing the collision and called 911. When the paramedics arrived, Al-Kuraishi was pronounced dead at the accident scene.

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California-Car-Accident-AttorneysPeople who negligently entrust their vehicles to others whom they know or should have known are unfit to drive may be liable to pay damages to accident injury victims that are caused by the negligence of the drivers. In Ghezavat v. Harris, Cal. Ct. App., Case No. A154405, the court looked at whether the defendant should have been allowed to supplement the jury instruction on negligent entrustment and whether he could have been found to negligently entrust the vehicle when he was a co-owner who did not have control of the vehicle.

Factual and procedural background

John Harris was a 32-year-old man who was driving a Toyota Tacoma truck on Nov. 7, 2011. While he was driving, he suffered a grand mal seizure, lost control of the vehicle, and struck a car that was occupied by Mahin Dowlati and Ellie Pirdivari. Dowlati and Pirdivari were killed in the accident, and their family members filed a wrongful death lawsuit against both John Harris for negligence and David Harris, his father, for negligent entrustment.

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When people in California are injured in accidents, they may be able to recover compensation by filing lawsuits against parties who negligently contributed to their accidents and injuries. People who file lawsuits need to be aware of the discovery rules as shown by Du-All Safety, LLC v. Superior Court, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. A115119. The discovery rules outline when expert witnesses that the parties intend to call should be disclosed to the other side.

Factual background of the case

In Nov. 2015, Mark Krein was walking on a suspended steel footbridge at his job at the Tuolomne Water District. The bridge had been constructed in 1974 as a part of a wastewater treatment plant, and it connected one digester tank to another. While Krein was walking across the footbridge, it suddenly collapsed beneath him. He plummeted to the ground and suffered severe injuries that resulted in paraplegia.

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Californians who suffer serious injuries in accidents because of negligence may be entitled to recover compensation for their losses. However, as the decision in Stokes v. Muschinske, Cal. Ct. App, Case No. B280116 demonstrates, it is important to properly value your claim and that you do not overreach. Even when jury misconduct might have occurred, it may not be enough to secure a new trial when your damages award is much less than what you expected.

Factual and procedural background

Plaintiffs James Stokes and Patricia Stokes were traveling in their car on March 28, 2013. Defendant Martin Muschinske was operating a pickup truck with a horse trailer at the same time. The truck and trailer were fully loaded, and Muschinske rear-ended the Stokes’s car, causing serious injuries to James Stokes.

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company-car-accident-lawyerIn California, if you are injured in an accident that is caused by someone who is working, the at-fault driver’s employer may be liable to pay damages to you. Like other states, California assigns liability to employers when their employees negligently cause injuries to others while they are working. However, employers are not responsible for the negligent actions of their employees when their employees are not acting within the scope and course of their jobs.

In Moreno v. Visser Ranch, Cal. Ct. App., Case No. F075822, the court explored a situation in which a worker was driving an employer-provided vehicle after hours. However, since the worker was required to drive the employer-provided vehicle at all times and was on-call 24 hours per day, the court still found that he may have been acting within the scope and course of his job, meaning that his employer could be found to be liable by the trier of fact.

Factual and procedural background of the case

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When workers cause accidents in Los Angeles while they are acting in the course and scope of their jobs, their employers may be liable to pay damages to the injured victims. There are limits to what is considered to be acting in the course and scope of employment, however. In Ayon v. Esquire Deposition Solutions, Cal. Ct. Appeals, Case No. G054578, G055396, the court considered the limits of respondeat superior in cases involving after-hours phone calls between two employees.

Factual background of the case

Brittini Zuppardo had worked at Esquire Deposition Solutions since 2005 as its calendaring manager. Her job was to enter deposition information onto a calendar and to schedule with attorneys. She would call court reporters from a list until she could find one that was available on the date of the scheduled deposition. Zuppardo’s normal working hours were from 8;30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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In strict products liability cases, manufacturers are held to be strictly liable for their products when their defective designs injure people. While strict products liability is concerned with the nature of the products themselves and not the negligence of the manufacturers, evidence of the practices of others in the industry may be admissible for certain limited purposes as was found by the California Supreme Court in Kim v. Toyota Motor Corp., Cal. Supreme Court No. S232754 (2018).

Factual and procedural background of the case

On April 10, 2010, William Jae kim was driving a 2005 Toyota Tundra in the rain on the Angeles Forest Higwhay in the mountains. As he descended through a righthand curve at a speed of 45 to 50 mph, Kim saw another motorist who was driving in the opposite direction cross the center line into his lane. In an effort to avoid a collision, Kim steered right, left and then right again. These steering maneuvers forced Kim to lose control of his truck, and it ran off of the road and down a cliff before it came to a rest. Kim suffered severe spinal cord injuries which left him suffering from quadriplegia.

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Upland-CA-Accident-AttorneysIn California, personal injury claims may be filed against the government when governmental employees negligently cause accidents while they are working within the scope and course of their jobs. Governmental claims are more difficult than claims against private defendants. It is important for people to act quickly when their accidents were caused by governmental employees because of the much shorter statute of limitations. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help clients to navigate through the process so that they might be likelier to prevail on their claims.

In Mildred Najera v. City of Upland, San Bernardino Case No. CIVDS1505973, a woman who was injured by a municipal employee was able to recover damages. The woman suffered an exacerbation of pre-existing injuries in the accident.

Factual background of the case

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