Chelsea Kashergen, 22, was killed in a Fullerton crash after she was struck by a FedEx delivery truck while riding her bicycle. According to a CBS Los Angeles news report, the fatal collision occurred the afternoon of June 20, 2013 at the intersection of Nutwood Avenue and Ladera Vista Road. Police say the truck was traveling north on Ladera Vista. The truck driver was preparing to make a left turn to go westbound on Nutwood when he struck the eastbound bicyclist. Officials said Kashergen was not wearing a helmet. No arrests or citations were reported. The investigation is ongoing.
Bike Crashes in Orange County
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2010 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were 52 injuries reported in Fullerton as a result of bicycle accidents. During the same year, three people died and 1,187 were injured due to bike crashes countywide.
California Vehicle Codes
Based on this news report, it appears that Kashergen was eastbound on Nutwood and the driver of the FedEx truck was going north on Ladera Vista and tried to make a left turn to go west on Nutwood when he hit the bicyclist. It appears that the FedEx driver did not see the eastbound bicyclist. It also appears that the truck driver had a stop sign while the bicyclist did not. California Vehicle Code section 21802 (a) requires drivers to come to a full stop at a stop sign and yield the right of way to vehicles. Also under California Vehicle Code Section 21200, bicycles have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers of other vehicles.
Fault and Liability
In this case, if it is determined that the driver of the FedEx truck was at fault, then both the driver and his or her employer can be held liable for the victim’s wrongful death. Victims’ families in such cases can seek compensation to cover damages such as medical and funeral costs, lost future income and loss of love and companionship. Victims’ families would also be well advised to contact an experienced Orange County bicycle accident lawyer who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that the negligent parties are held liable. The best personal injury law firms will always offer a free and comprehensive consultation to injured victims and their families.