Accident News For Attorneys, the Legal Field & the Public
March 15, 2012--Oakland, CA--A driver is dead and others injured after a falling tree caused an accident on Highway 13 at Park Boulevard in Oakland early this morning.
Early police reports indicate that a small compact car stopped due to a fallen tree and the driver exited the vehicle. The driver of a pickup truck swerved to avoid the tree and struck the driver of the compact car. California Highway Patrol officers are trying to determine if the driver and two passengers exited the vehicle before or after the tree fell into the road.
Both passengers and the driver of the truck were treated and released with minor injuries. The driver of the car was pronounced dead a short time after the accident. The driver’s name has not yet been released.
Another driver, Paul Allen, was struck by a tree around the same time on Highway 17. However, Mr. Allen remained in the vehicle; the airbags deployed and he was fortunately not injured badly.
My sincere condolences go out to the family and friends of the victim in this accident.
Between 1995 and 2007, 407 people in the United States were killed by falling trees. Most of these died in their homes as the result of a tree falling on the roof during a storm or tornado. However, 44 percent of these victims were in cars at the time of the accident.
It takes a wind of 110 miles per hour to snap a mature tree's trunk, a wind of 87 miles per hour to uproot large trees, and a mere three-second burst of 71 miles per hour to snap off large branches.
What Happened In This Accident
Although the downed tree was ultimately the cause of the fatal personal injury accident, the driver of the truck may also be responsible for the death and injury caused in this accident. Although it seems obvious the truck driver did not intend to hit the victim, it is possible that he was traveling too fast for conditions and could not stop when he came upon the scene.
Who is liable for this accident will depend on what a professional personal injury lawyer determines. If the owners of the land where the tree was located were negligent in clearing out dangerous trees, they could be liable. If the government agency responsible for maintaining the road failed to give adequate clear space to protect motorists, they could be liable. Finally, if the driver of the truck failed to use proper caution, he could be liable.
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