Even when pedestrians are not crossing the street, they are still at risk for being struck by wayward auto drivers. Within the last three years, our attorneys here at Walkup Melodia have handled three major injury accident cases where drivers either lost control, became confused about their surroundings, or absentmindedly put their car into drive instead of reverse when near the sidewalk. Because those drivers failed to keep their automobile safely off of the sidewalk, terrible injuries resulted to pedestrians who were minding their own business.
The most recent example of this occurred in Vallejo when one person was killed and five others injured by a car that veered onto the sidewalk. According to SFBay, the driver was headed north when he suddenly veered onto the sidewalk for an unknown reason.
The car sideswiped a bus stop, hitting a person waiting there, before striking a telephone pole. That did not stop the car, which then plowed into a group of three women and two children. The car dragged two of the pedestrians for a while before finally stopping.
One of the people the driver dragged down the sidewalk died at the scene. The rest were taken to the hospital with injuries ranging from serious to critical . The driver was taken into police custody and sent to the hospital. His condition was unknown.
As mentioned above, the SFBay article about this terrible incident does not have information about why it occurred. Drugs and alcohol have not been ruled out. Nor has some physical issue or sudden emergency. Whether due to alcohol or drug impairment, a mechanical failure, or some other external cause, the driver who loses awareness of his or her surroundings is a danger for those both on and off the roadway