Hit and Run Driver Identified in Jogger’s Death
I’m Sacramento wrongful death lawyer Ed Smith. In an update to the death of a jogger in Natomas on April 24, the suspect turned himself over to the police two days after the accident that claimed the life of Ericka Jennifer Hann, a 47-year-old woman. Police reported on Twitter that the pickup suspected of striking the woman had been found. According to a spokesperson for the Sacramento police, the driver was identified as Tyler Rumberger, age 22. I would like to extend my sympathy to Ericka’s family.
Recap of the Accident
The tragedy occurred when Hann, who was a resident of Orangevale, was out jogging at about 11:44 in the morning. She was in the process of crossing the street on Grasslands Drive where it intersects with West El Camino when she was hit by an unidentified vehicle. Rather than stopping, the vehicle driven by Rumberger kept going which constitutes a felony hit and run. Felony hit and run accidents are those where someone is injured or killed, and the vehicle does not stop as required by law. There was a crosswalk where Hann was walking across the street but no light. It was previously reported that the driver may have run a stop sign, although the policeman who said that was quoted as saying that he didn’t understand why the driver did not spot Hann in the crosswalk.
Hit and Run Accidents
The number of hit and run accidents has increased in the years since 2009. In 2015, 737,100 crashes included a driver who fled the scene. In the interval from 2009 to 2016, deaths in hit and run accidents rose 7.2 percent annually. In the year 2016, 2,049 people died in such accidents across the nation, which represents an increase of 60 percent over that of 2009 and 11.7 percent of crashes that occurred.
In Sacramento County, the California Office of Traffic Safety said there were 783 hit and run crashes that resulted in either injury or death in 2015. In Sacramento, there were 315, giving the city a rank of third out of 15 other cities.
Pedestrians and Cyclists Most Often Injured in Hit and Run Accidents
According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, hit and run accidents involve pedestrians and cyclists 65 percent of the time. The United States exceeds the number of hit and run crashes in other countries. The incidence of fatalities involving a fleeing driver in European countries is about 3 percent each year compared to 20 percent in this country.
Pedestrian Deaths Climbing
The number of pedestrian deaths in this country has been rising each year. The number of pedestrians killed or injured in Sacramento alone was 228 in 2015. This is 50 percent of the total number of pedestrians injured or killed in the entire county. The majority at 73 percent of pedestrian accidents occur in urban areas with 70 percent happening at non-intersections. Seventy percent of all pedestrian accidents occur at night.
Alcohol Use and Pedestrian Fatalities
Approximately 37 percent of all pedestrians who are killed in an accident were legally intoxicated. This corresponds to roughly 12 percent of drivers who were impaired. Overall, nearly 50 percent of all pedestrian accidents involved either an impaired driver or pedestrian or both.
What Can be Done to Reduce the Number of Pedestrian Accidents
There are things that the government, drivers, and walkers can do to increase safety. Here are a few:
- Map out problem areas: State and local authorities can work with the community to map out areas that have the most significant number of pedestrian accidents, and do something about it. For instance, if a community center is in the middle of the block and the crosswalk is at the intersection, the crosswalk could be moved to the middle of the block.
- Lectures: Parents, schools and youth groups can give presentations describing the problem of pedestrian accidents, and provide ways to avoid them.
- Pedestrian obligation: Pedestrians need to cross only at crosswalks. If a crosswalk is not available, find a well-lit intersection, and wait for traffic to slow before crossing. Use bright clothing in the daytime, and carry a flashlight at night. Look both ways before crossing.
- Driver responsibility: Drivers need to be more aware of pedestrians, particularly at intersections. Speed should be reduced in and around crosswalks, and special care should be taken in bad weather. Particular caution should be exercised when backing up.
- Neither pedestrians nor drivers should be driving or walking while distracted or drinking.
Sacramento Wrongful death Lawyer
I’m Sacramento wrongful death lawyer Ed Smith. If a loved one has been killed by a hit and run driver, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover funeral and burial expenses as well as other damages. Just reach out to me at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for friendly advice that is always free of charge. You can contact me online too.
I’ve helped residents of Northern California, including Sacramento, for 36 years with wrongful death claims.
I am a California member of the Million Dollar Forum. This nationwide group of top trial lawyers only allows membership for attorneys who have won verdicts or settlements that were in excess of $1 million for a clients.
If you want to know more about me, turn to the following pages:
Photo Attribution: https://pixabay.com/en/runner-jogger-fitness-health-405773/
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