Lanell Whitfield, an off-duty Whittier police officer, was killed in a motorcycle accident in Lynwood. According to a CBS News report, the fatal crash occurred the afternoon of June 4 at the intersection of Martin Luther King Boulevard and Beechwood Avenue. Whitfield was in his 20s and is survived by his parents. Whittier Police Department announced his death later that night on their social media accounts stating that Whitfield had joined the department last October.
Witnesses who saw the collision called 911 saying the motorcycle was on fire with a person lying near it. It is not clear if someone rear-ended Whitfield or if he collided with another vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The investigation is ongoing. No arrests or citations have been reported.
We offer our deepest condolences to the family of Lanell Whitfield for their tremendous loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcyclists continue to be overrepresented in fatal traffic accidents. In 2020, 5,579 motorcyclists died in collisions nationwide. While riding a motorcycle can be exhilarating, it can also be dangerous. Per vehicle miles traveled in 2020, motorcyclists were about 28 times more likely than passenger vehicle occupants to die in a motor vehicle crash and were four times more likely to be injured.
Laws and Liability Issues
A number of fatal motorcycle accidents at street intersections occur because drivers of left-turning vehicles fail to spot or yield the right of way to oncoming motorcyclists. Other major injuries or fatal motorcycle accidents also occur because other motorists speed or drive recklessly. Rear-end collisions at street intersections also have the potential to result in catastrophic motorcycle accidents.
In such cases, a thorough investigation is needed to determine how or why a motorcycle accident occurred. In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, families of deceased victims may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering, and loss of love, care, and companionship. An experienced Los Angles motorcycle accident lawyer will be able to advise victims’ families in such cases regarding their legal rights and options.