Dec 24, 2020
An unidentified 27-year-old Santa Ana, California man slammed into a metal barrier on the United States-Mexico border Tuesday afternoon, fatally injuring himself. Prior to impact with the border barrier, the driver struck two pedestrians, causing serious injuries to both. The driver was reportedly traveling in a grey sedan from Tijuana, Mexico to San Diego, California.
The pedestrians were street vendors occupying a stand located on the Mexican side of the border. Authorities identified one victim as a 70-year-old man, and the other as a 49-year-old woman who was operating a wheelchair. The pedestrian accident/fatal car crash occurred at Ysidro Port of Entry.
“There was an incident this afternoon at the San Ysidro Port of Entry at about 2 p.m. that resulted in fatal injuries,” U.S. Customs and Border Protection said in a statement. “A 27-year-old male, driving a grey sedan traveling northbound from Mexico at a high rate of speed, collided with a metal arm gate in a closed vehicle lane.”
“There were no other injuries reported on the U.S. side… California Highway Patrol is investigating the incident,” the statement read.
The Tijuana Fire Department confirmed that both victims sustained moderate injuries, and that the Mexican Red Cross transported the two pedestrians by ambulance to a local hospital. Thus far, authorities have not confirmed whether or not the driver was under the influence of alcohol or other substances when the collision occurred. The Santa Ana resident driver was reportedly traveling in a closed lane at excessive speed. The investigation is currently ongoing.
A heavily secured border crossing like the one where the above accident took place may seem like an unlikely location for a pedestrian accident. However, this particular fatal car accident that also injured two innocent individuals highlights the fact that pedestrian accidents can happen anywhere, at any time. Accordingly, pedestrians are advised to always remain vigilant, whether walking through a marked crosswalk, running along a roadside, bicycling in cities or rural areas, or even sitting at a table adjacent to constant traffic (e.g. at a restaurant or roadside stand).
Pedestrians are advised to always monitor their surroundings and remain watchful for any potential hazards. According to Telemundo, a witness to Tuesday’s pedestrian accident told the news outlet that a “similar” crash happened only one day earlier. The witness noted that, “people are very stressed and these types of accidents happen” particularly in the days leading up to Christmas.
The end of the year holiday season represents a significantly dangerous time for drivers and pedestrians. Even with the state-mandated COVID-19 lockdown currently in effect, many Californians are out and about shopping, viewing holiday lights and displays, and visiting family members. As such, various types of car accident-related injuries happen frequently around this time of year.
According to the criminal complaint, Coleman reportedly ran a red light before the crash and subsequently fled the scene after the accident. The complaint against Coleman further stated that she had a blood alcohol concentration of more than .20 on the evening of the accident. Coleman allegedly tried to leave the scene on foot before she was apprehended.
Distracted driving is also very common around the holidays, and can impact drivers as well as passengers. According to the Centers for Disease Control, every day about eight people in the U.S. are killed in crashes that involve a distracted driver.
Increased Traffic: Traditionally, more cars are on the road during the holiday season when compared to other parts of the year. Increased traffic means more opportunities where a car accident might occur. Additionally, many drivers report being in the car for longer periods of time during the holidays.
Increased Drunk Driving: As we celebrate the holidays, many of us indulge in alcohol. There is a significant increase in drunk driving that occurs over the holidays and can lead to serious accidents involving injuries. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTSA) studied the rate of car accidents occurring over major holidays. The NTSA found that drunk driving is much more prevalent during the winter holidays. In 2019, there were 799 car accident fatalities between Christmas and New Year’s Day. That represents a significant increase when compared to other holidays, such as Labor Day (448), Fourth of July (594), and Thanksgiving (454).
Increased Fatigued Driving: The holiday season can bring many demands for us to shop, decorate, and entertain. These activities can lead to a lack of sleep and many people report increased fatigue over the holidays. The National Safety Council reports that drivers are three times more likely to get into a car accident when operating a vehicle while fatigued. Reaction time, as well as your ability to spot road hazards, is severely limited under fatigued driving conditions.
Increased Driving Under Dangerous Conditions: Though this doesn’t impact Southern California drivers as much as those in other states, driving during the holidays can often mean navigating roads under difficult weather conditions. Storms, snow, ice, high winds, and much more can produce dangerous conditions for drivers. Remaining home and venturing out after a storm passes is always recommended.
Increased Driving of Poorly Maintained Vehicles: This is a common issue every year, but during the pandemic, when many are struggling to maintain gainful employment and meet their financial obligations, it unfortunately affects more drivers than ever before. Some car owners may forgo regular maintenance in order to cover other expenses related to the holidays. This can lead to a dangerous situation if cars are not maintained properly and then used for holiday travel. Blowouts from worn tires, faulty engines with maintenance lights that haven’t been addressed, faulty brakes, and more can result in devastating car or pedestrian accidents. If you’re planning to travel over the holidays, maintaining your vehicle is strongly recommended. Failure to do so can impact not only you and the individuals in your vehicle, but every other driver on the road and pedestrian on the street you encounter during your travels.
Whether you were seriously injured in a pedestrian accident, or sustained only minor injuries, it’s critically important that you speak to an attorney who is experienced in such cases and has successfully helped injured victims like you.
If you sustain injuries in a pedestrian accident and are left with medical bills, necessary rehabilitation, time away from work, lost wages or future earnings, and pain and suffering, don’t let the insurance company take advantage of you by attempting to minimize the damages award you deserve.
With DLG’s skilled and dedicated pedestrian accident attorneys on your side, you can be confident knowing that your rights will be protected under the law, and you have a fierce advocate fighting for your best interests and ultimate well-being.
At DLG, we’ve recovered over $100 million for injured victims, and we know how devastating a pedestrian accident can be on you, your family, and your quality of life. Contact us today for a free consultation where we would be happy to explain all your options. We can help you begin the legal process towards securing a maximum financial damages award for your pedestrian accident injuries. Call 855-804-9636 today.
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