One of the Worst Pedestrian Crashes in California’s Recent Memory
On November 16th, an SUV barreled into a group of jogging recruits in Whittier, California, leaving scores of them with serious injuries. This incident represents one of the worst pedestrian accidents in California’s recent history, and the sheer number of injured victims is shocking. But what exactly happened here? Could this have been an intentional attack? Why were they so closely packed together while jogging, and why couldn’t any of them get out of the way? Most importantly, who will bear the responsibility for this terrible incident, and how will the injured individuals receive compensation for their injuries? The worst part is that this is not the only shocking pedestrian accident California has seen within the past few weeks. And if you look back further in history, many pedestrian crashes are arguably worse.
25 Recruits Left With Serious Injuries After Shocking Pedestrian Accident
On November 16th, 2022 it was reported that 25 law enforcement recruits were left with serious injuries after a vehicle plowed into them. The recruits were out for a training jog that morning, and no one quite expected something so terrible to happen. Surveillance footage shows an SUV approaching the crowd of joggers at high speeds. It was not until the last minute that the joggers realized two things: First, the car was not going to stop. Second, the car was heading in the wrong direction on the road. By then, the joggers attempted to scatter – but it was too late.
The 22-year-old driver left several severe injuries in his wake. One suffered serious head trauma, while another suffered an amputated limb. One recruit had to be placed on a ventilator. A total of five critical injuries were reported, and a further four were said to have suffered “moderate” injuries. The remaining 16 were fortunate enough to escape with only minor injuries.
The real question is why the driver found himself zooming at high speed into a formation of recruits. There were no other obstacles on the road – no reason for him to drive in the wrong lane. In addition, some recruits report hearing the car accelerate immediately before the impact. The driver appeared to be completely sober after the crash and blew a “0” on the breathalyzer test. It was only due to an impact with a light pole that the vehicle stopped. One trainer stated that if it had not been for the light pole, the car would have continued through even more recruits, potentially causing more injuries:
“There was a light pole on the east side of the street, and the one thing that was relayed to me was, ‘Thank God for that light pole’ because the vehicle ultimately hit it and stopped as opposed to possibly hitting more recruits.”
Was it Intentional?
Almost immediately, observers began to speculate whether this was an intentional act. While some believe that the incident has all the hallmarks of a “terrible accident,” others believe that it might have been some kind of politically-motivated or terrorist attack. The Highway Patrol is leading the official investigation, and they have stated that they are looking into all possibilities, including potential drug intoxication. In any case, on November 17, the driver was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder. It might very well be that the authorities have uncovered new information that shows this incident was no accident.
We have seen in the past that vehicles are often used to carry out intentional attacks. In 2016, a car was used to carry out a terrorist attack in Berlin, killing 12 people. In 2017, a similar attack was carried out in London, leaving 40 people injured and four people dead after a combination of both vehicular and knife attacks.
Other Notable Pedestrian Attacks in California
On November 12th, it was reported that six people were hospitalized in South Los Angeles after an SUV plowed through a crowded street near a carnival. This hit-and-run caused considerable panic, and it was preceded by a loud explosion that could have been a gunshot. The crowd numbered in the thousands, so the fact that only six people were injured is something of a miracle. Fortunately, none of the injuries were life-threatening – although, as of this writing, the driver is still on the loose in a white, newer Porsche Cayenne.
One pedestrian was also killed recently in Simi Valley, and the 70-year-old victim was apparently crossing a crosswalk when he was struck by a Ford pickup truck. The driver was reportedly sober, although an investigation is ongoing.
On November 9, another hit-and-run pedestrian accident was reported in Fresno. This accident robbed the victim of his life. He was apparently crossing the road outside of a designated crosswalk at the time, and witnesses say that the pedestrian was hit when a van swerved to avoid another vehicle. The driver who struck the pedestrian stayed at the scene of the crash while the other vehicle fled the scene.
These incidents show how severe and common pedestrian accidents can be in California. Even though the 25 recruits represent a shocking incident, others have lost their lives. All victims deserve attention and justice – whether they are associated with a major news story or not.
Where Can I Find a Qualified Personal Injury Attorney in California?
If you have been searching the California area for an experienced personal injury attorney, look no further than Mary Alexander & Associates. We know how shocking, traumatic, and life-changing pedestrian accidents can be, and we are ready to guide you toward the compensation you need. A settlement can help you pay for missed wages, medical expenses, emotional distress, and much more. Holding negligent drivers accountable may also provide a sense of justice and closure that makes it easier to move on with your life. The statute of limitations may prevent you from suing if you wait too long, so it is best to get started right away. Book your consultation with us today, and we can help you develop an effective action plan based on your unique needs.