Berkeley Resident Killed in Hit and Run Accident
I’m Ed Smith, a Berkeley wrongful death lawyer. An accident in Sonoma County on August 27 resulted in the death of Berkeley resident Christopher Patti, who worked at UC Berkeley as the Associate General Counsel and Chief Counsel for the campus.
I would like to extend my sympathy and prayers to the friends and family of the accident victim in their time of loss and sorrow.
Details of the Accident
The accident happened shortly before 9:00 in the morning when Patti was riding his bicycle near Guerneville along the side of River Road near Summer Crossing. According to officials with the California Highway Patrol, Patti had stopped along the shoulder and was checking his mobile phone when a BMW went out of control along a curve, slid and struck Patti. The driver kept heading west and then turned in the opposite direction heading back toward town.
Hit and Run Driver Identified
A representative of the CHP reported that the BMW lost its license plate at the accident scene. The vehicle was traced back to 28-year-old Jonathan Rigger from Monte Rio/Rio Nido. Patti was declared deceased at the accident scene by a crew from the fire district for Russian River. Those who might have information regarding the crash are asked to contact the CHP.
Bicyclist Fatalities and Injuries
Berkeley, unfortunately, ranks number one among bicyclist accident fatalities and injuries among the 57 other cities of a similar size in the state as reported by the California Office of Traffic Safety. In 2014, there were 160 fatalities and injuries of bicycle riders caused by traffic accidents. Besides the high number of people who utilize bicycles to go to work and to enjoy the outdoors, the lack of protection afforded a bicycle rider when compared to a motor vehicle or even a motorcycle places them at risk for serious injuries or even death when involved in a collision.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents:
- Motor vehicles turning in front of a bicyclist
- Collisions from the rear
- Defects in the roadway
Recovering Compensation for a Bicycle Accident Wrongful Death
Unfortunately, nothing can bring back a loved one when a negligent driver has taken them away from their family. However, an experienced wrongful death lawyer can help make the financial end of that loss easier, helping the family to go on. A spouse, minor child, parent or others who would have inherited from the accident victim are allowed to claim fair compensation for the loss of their loved one in California.
This includes economic and noneconomic damages such as the financial support the widow would have received throughout the lifetime of the deceased spouse had that person lived and guiding hand to raise a child or loss of emotional support. The individual also has the right to file a survivorship claim, which can include the suffering and pain the lost family member suffered before expiring. Speaking to an experienced wrongful death lawyer when facing such a grievous loss may be helpful. A lawyer may assist by explaining what options are available and help by filing a wrongful death lawsuit to recover compensation.
Berkeley Wrongful Death Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Berkeley wrongful death lawyer. It is always difficult to lose a member of the family, but that loss is compounded when it occurred senselessly through the negligent actions of another person. If you have lost a loved one, please give me a phone call at (916) 921-6400 for a little of my friendly, free advice. If you live outside the immediate area, you can reach me toll-free at (800) 404-5400.
I have been honored to serve the residents of California, including Berkeley and Alameda County, as an injury lawyer since 1982. In that time, my legal team and I have assisted many families with their wrongful death claims and in traumatic injury cases.
As a Million Dollar Advocates Forum member representing California, I am proud to belong to this group that restricts membership to trial attorneys who have served as primary counsel in cases with awarded settlements or verdicts of $1 million or over.
Additional information about our firm and some of our cases is found on our page titled Settlements and Verdicts.
For the latest news about California personal injuries, please check out our blog page and articles on autoaccident.com.
Photo Attribution: Wikimedia Commons cycling-659806_1280.jpg
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