Update | Sacramento Traffic Collision Kills Maintenance Worker and Injures Another

Maintenance Worker Killed and Another Injured in Interstate Traffic Collision at Sutterville Road

A traffic collision involving maintenance workers along Sutterville Road in Sacramento ended with the death of one and critical injuries to another on September 7. The accident occurred on Interstate 5 northbound at Sutterville Road between Highway 99 and Freeport Boulevard around 6:30 p.m. According to a spokesman for the California Highway Patrol (CHP), a construction truck carrying signs and parked on the right-side shoulder was struck by a minivan. 

Two Workers Struck as well as their Truck, Killing One and Seriously Injuring the Other

Both workers were struck. One died from the accident, while the other was transported to a nearby hospital and is listed in critical condition.

The Sacramento County Coroner’s Office has recently identified the deceased as 34-year-old Roseann Mary Guzman of Wheatland. A GoFundMe page has been created on behalf of the family of Roseann Guzman to help cover funeral costs.

The workers were not Caltrans employees but with a subcontractor called Construction Signs Inc. Three lanes of traffic were closed down by the CHP and a Sig Alert was issued because of the incident. 

Sig Alert Issued Following Fatal Traffic Collision

Motorists were asked to take alternate routes as an investigation was conducted into the cause of the accident. The driver remained at the scene and was reported as being cooperative. Neither alcohol nor drug use is suspected as a factor in the fatal traffic collision. 

Placing a Claim For Compensation Following a Work Injury or Death

When workers are injured or killed while on the job in a traffic collision, the injured party or family of the deceased may place a claim with workers’ compensation. In the above case, the person who died and the other who was injured can file their claims with workers’ comp through the subcontractor who was employing them.

Exceptions to Subcontractor Responsibility in a Traffic Collision

However, only under certain circumstances can a claim be filed against the employer that hired the subcontractor. An exception to Privette v. Superior Court (1993) 5 Cal.4th 689 states that if someone who hires an independent contractor retains any control over any portion of the work being performed and is negligent in a way that contributes to the accident injury, they can indeed be held responsible.

Worker Injuries or Fatalities Caused by a Third Party

If the injury occurred because of a third party or a family lost their loved one, they might decide to go another route than workers’ comp. The injured person can file a personal injury claim where they could recover all of their medical expenses, wages they lose from being unable to work and get compensation for their pain and suffering.

A family that loses their loved one due to a negligent third party can file a wrongful death claim. In this type of claim, they may recover the following:

  • Wages the deceased would have earned until retirement 
  • The wife may claim loss of consortium
  • The cost of the funeral and burial
  • Children in the family may claim loss of nurturing and guidance
  • The monetary value of loss of household assistance such as lawn care, child care and others

Because of the complexity of a case that involves workers’ comp and a potential private lawsuit against a third party, consulting with an accident attorney may be a good idea. The attorney can advise you of your options in going forward.

Personal Injury Lawyer in Sacramento

I’m Ed Smith, and I’m a Personal Injury lawyer in Sacramento. When you’ve been injured or have lost a loved one due to a negligent driver, you may be able to recover compensation. You are welcome to contact us to arrange a free and friendly consultation with one of our injury lawyers at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400. We can also be contacted online.

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Photo attribution: Image by Andreas Lischka from Pixabay 

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