Downtown Berkeley Site of Fatal Accident
A truck driver heading through downtown Berkeley on October 20 reportedly caused a fatal accident when a man in a wheelchair was hit in an intersection. The accident happened along Bancroft Way near Shattuck Avenue around 11:55 a.m. The wheelchair user was transported to Oakland Highland Hospital, where he died later, according to Berkeley Police Department spokesperson Byron White.
Truck Driver Remains at Fatal Accident Scene
The incident report stated that the man was underneath the commercial truck but was aware and conscious following the collision. The truck driver stayed at the scene of the fatal accident. Alcohol or drug use is not suspected as the cause of the crash. The area along Bancroft Way close to the accident was shut down as emergency personnel attended to the injured wheelchair user. It is unknown whether the truck driver was cited.
Reasons Why Wheelchair Users Are Often Involved in Traffic Accidents
This is just one of many accidents that have happened involving people in wheelchairs. Research shows that people in wheelchairs are involved in a disproportionate number of fatal traffic accidents. There are many reasons why this may be the case, including the following:
- People in wheelchairs are often less visible to drivers than other pedestrians. They may be lower to the ground and harder to see, especially at night or in low-light conditions.
- Wheelchair users may have difficulty hearing approaching traffic. This is especially true if they are using a manual wheelchair, as they may be focusing on propelling themselves forward and not paying attention to what’s going on around them.
- Wheelchair users may have difficulty maneuvering out of the way of an oncoming vehicle. This is especially true if the wheelchair is not equipped with power assist wheels or if the person is unable to use their upper body strength to move.
- Many intersections are not designed to accommodate people in wheelchairs. This can make it difficult for people in wheelchairs to cross streets safely.
- Some drivers simply do not know how to share the road with people in wheelchairs. They may not be aware of the special considerations that need to be made when driving near someone in a wheelchair.
Fatal Accident Negligence
If a truck driver is negligent in the death of a pedestrian or others, they may be held liable. The family can place a wrongful death claim to recover damages with the help of an accident attorney. Damages may include:
- Lost wages until the decedent’s age of retirement, including pension and insurance benefits
- The spouse may recover loss of consortium, love and affection the decedent provided
- The family’s children may recover compensation for the loss of their parent’s nurturing and mentoring
If the decedent had no immediate family, then other members may file such as parents or siblings.
Berkeley Wrongful Death Lawyer
I am Ed Smith, and I’m a Berkeley wrongful death lawyer. Those whose loved ones are killed by negligent drivers may be able to file a claim to recover compensation. We offer our free and friendly advice when you call us at (510) 631-0200 or (800) 404-5400. We can also be contacted online. Our injury lawyers can schedule a free consultation for you either in-person or virtually to have your case reviewed, questions answered, and to find out how to recover compensation.
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