Girardi | Keese

Good Samaritan dies in California hit-and-run car accident

Hit-and-run accidents often leave families struggling to understand why they have lost a loved one. One such recent California car accident left a tow-truck driver dead after he tried to assist a motorist stranded on the side of Pacific Coast Highway. Witnesses to the hit-and-run accident stated that a silver vehicle headed east struck the man on the side of the road as it passed by the stranded vehicle.

California Highway Patrol officials are now investigating the fatal crash. Reports indicate that not only did the silver vehicle strike tow-truck driver, but it also slammed into a parked car not too far from the site of the first accident. Witnesses were able to match the silver vehicle in the second collision to the one that hit the tow-truck driver.

The driver of that silver vehicle turned out to be a 44-year-old woman who was also injured in the course of the collisions. Emergency personnel took her to a local hospital and she apparently suffered head injuries. Officials could not say whether alcohol or drugs played a role in the fatal accident, but toxicology tests will provide more insight.

Police have not determined whether or not they will issue charges against the errant driver, but the fact remains that she fatally struck a pedestrian trying to help another person. In the case of a fatal car accident like this one, victim's families are sometimes able to file wrongful death lawsuits against negligent drivers. This may even be true in a situation where a driver's negligence may not rise to the level of criminal wrongdoing.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Tow truck driver killed on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu," Hailey Branson-Potts, Feb. 12, 2013

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