4 Year old struck by truck Rancho Seco

A 4 year old girl  from Lodi was tragically killed today at Rancho Seco when a 4 year allegedly  old darted out between 2 cars.

According to the Sacramento Bee story, the accident could not have been avoided.

This 4th of July accident must have taken a terrible toll on everyone and yet I wonder if the Newspaper is concluding

far too quickly that the accident was unavoidable.

Child “dart out” accidents happen relatively frequently. They happen  more often around ice cream trucks, schools, and parks.

As a Sacramento Auto Accident Attorney, I have handled many of these cases.

Most adults driving a motorized vehicle are supposed to be alert for small children to run in front  of their truck because

that, unfortunately, is what small children often do.

This is especially true at a park where people are being carefree.

If a driver anticipates small children may be in the vicinity he has a duty, as an adult to proceed very carefully.

Sometimes, it is true that a driver really has no chance to avoid an impact with a small child.

But many times, an accident reconstructionist finds that the driver, if he had kept a proper lookout might either have avoided the impact or at least mitigated it.

California is also a comparative negligence state. If the driver of the truck was negligent in some degree after proper investigation, he would be responsible to the extent he was negligent.

I don’t know if the driver of this truck was free of fault at this point, but neither does anyone else.

To state someone is “Fault  free” several hours after a serious accident does a disservice to all involved.

Sending wishes of peace to all in this tragedy.

Ed Smith 



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