A driver who apparently was involved in three vehicle crashes on the 10 Freeway in Pomona has fled the scene. The multivehicle collision, which occurred on the westbound 10 Freeway, began at approximately 12 a.m. last Sunday when a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu rear-ended a 2018 Honda Accord that was disabled in the No. 4 lane.
The impact caused the Honda to lurch forward, striking three people who had gotten out of the vehicle. A 41-year-man died at the scene, while the other two victims, 39-year-old Velma Soto and 20-year-old Luis Miranda, suffered severe injuries and were taken to Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center. All three were residents of South Gate.
While the Chevrolet Malibu was disabled in the No. 2 lane, a 2016 Chevrolet Cruze, also headed west on the 10 Freeway, collided with the vehicle. The driver, Christaphore Ruffin, 32, of Ruffin, sustained minor injuries. Meanwhile, the driver of the Malibu fled the scene before police arrived. The accidents remain under investigation.
Less traffic but more accidents
The rise in telecommuting as an alternative to driving to work has led to lighter traffic patterns across the country since last March. In spite of this, fatalities appear to have risen when factoring in the total vehicle miles travelled (VMT).
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimated that the overall fatality rate in the first half of 2020 was 2% lower than the same period of 2019. However, the VMT also decreased by approximately 264.2 billion miles, or 16%, during that same period in 2020. When factoring in the reduced VMT against the fatality rate for 2020, the NHTSA reported that fatalities were actually up by 31% over the same period of 2019.
Negligence in California
California statutes recognize comparative negligence in a personal injury claim, which means that the injured party can sue for damages even if they are partially responsible for the accident. The amount that they can claim is a percentage of the damages attributable to the defendant.
If you have been injured in a car wreck that was caused by a negligent or distracted driver, it is important to have seasoned and compassionate legal counsel that will fight for your right to the maximum compensation that you deserve.