Pickup Driver Killed in Stockton Train Accident

Pickup Driver Killed in Stockton Train Accident

A pickup truck driver was killed in a Stockton train accident on the afternoon of August 5, 2019. The incident occurred at a railroad crossing north of Morada Lane and east of Lower Sacramento Road in Stockton. Officers from the California Highway Patrol (CHP) reported that a driver of a pickup truck was involved in a collision with a freight train at the railroad crossing. Sadly, the motorist was reportedly ejected from the vehicle and pronounced deceased at the scene by first responders. The identity of the decedent was not immediately available due to pending notification of family members.

Loss of a Loved One in a Stockton Train Accident

An unexpected death in the family is devastating. When that loss is caused by the wrongdoing of a train operator or train company, the surviving family members may face both financial and emotional hardship. Dealing with insurance companies of the train company can be even more stressful, particularly when liability is being disputed. An attorney can help guide a family through times like these by answering their questions and explaining their legal options for wrongful death recovery. This way, the family can focus on recovering from their loved one’s death without financial and legal worry.

How is Wrongful Death Proven?

Proving liability in a wrongful death case is vital. The claim may not lead to a favorable outcome unless the four elements of negligence can be shown with evidence. This includes a duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages incurred. Some of the ways a train operator or train company may be found at fault for an accident include:

  • Derailments
  • Insufficient screening, training, and supervision of train operators
  • Lack of fencing and other warning signage in the presence of the railroad tracks
  • Mechanical failure or defects of the train
  • Train operator fatigue

What Can Be Recovered in a Wrongful Death Claim?

The loss of a loved one may impact every aspect of your life, from your financial standing to your own personal wellbeing. California law recognizes the losses a family goes through after wrongful death and allows recovery of the following:

  • Costs of a family member’s funeral and burial
  • Medical expenses incurred before the loved one’s passing
  • Mental anguish and emotional pain suffered by surviving family members
  • Loss of a loved one’s moral support, companionship, care, and affection
  • Lost financial support, benefits, and inheritance the decedent would have provided to the family

The damages mentioned above may vary depending on the relationship the claimant had with the decedent. For more information on these cases and what damages may be recovered, watch the below video.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in California?

Specific family members are eligible to damages in a wrongful death claim. These include the surviving children, spouse, or domestic partner of the deceased. When such parties do not exist, there may be some exceptions to these eligibility requirements. Contact an experienced attorney for more details.

Is There a Time Limit to File a Wrongful Death Suit?

A wrongful death claim must be filed before an impending expiration date. This is known as the statute of limitations, which is two years for wrongful death in California. In these cases, the time starts running at the time of loss. If the train is part of public transit, there are different deadlines and criteria for pursuing a claim against a government entity. In these circumstances, a claim must be filed with the appropriate government agency within 180 days from the date of a loved one’s passing. If the deadline is not met, the case may be dismissed by the court. This means the family may lose the right to recover compensation for the death of their loved one.

Personal Injury Lawyers in Stockton

I’m Ed Smith, a Stockton personal injury lawyer. Nothing is more tragic than being seriously injured or losing someone you love in a train accident. This is especially true if the crash could have been prevented had safety protocol been followed. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a collision caused by the fault of a negligent party or entity, you may benefit from the insight of an experienced attorney. You are welcome to call me anytime at (209) 227-1931 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400 to receive my free, friendly advice.

You are invited to look at our client ratings and reviews on the following sites:

The Million Dollar Advocates is a forum that showcases trial attorneys from around the country who have won over $1 million for a client. I belong to this group as a member of California. I am also a member of the National Association of Distinguished Counsel, an organization composed of attorneys who exhibit the highest standards of excellence in their practice of law.

As a Stockton personal injury attorney, I find satisfaction in helping injured people and their families to find the positives in what could otherwise be a financial, emotional, and physical hardship. That said, you are invited to look at our past case results obtained for our clients at our Verdicts and Settlements page.

Image Credit: By “StockSnap” via Pixabay

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