Another pedestrian has been killed while on a roadway. This time it was a 31-year old woman who was hit by a sheriff's patrol car in the community of Joshua Tree.
According to reports, the woman was running across Twenty-nine Palms Highway when she was hit. She was taken to a nearby hospital where she died shortly after. The accident is under investigation to determine why the deputy was unable to avoid the collision or if the woman was crossing the roadway illegally.
California Vehicle Code Section 21954 states, "Every pedestrian upon a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway so near as to constitute an immediate hazard." However, it also states, "The provisions of this section shall not relieve the driver of a vehicle from the duty to exercise due care for the safety of any pedestrian upon a roadway."
I hope the family of the victim contacts an experienced San Bernardino Personal Injury attorney who will ensure that their legal rights are protected. If the investigation finds that the deputy was at fault, the family may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the deputy as well as his or her employer. According to California law, this claim must be properly filed within 180 days of the accident.