The Associated Press reported that members of a fire crew from Los Angeles comprised of inmates and one Los Angeles County firefighter, were seriously injured and two others died in a head on auto accident on Tuesday November 23, 2010. The fatal car accident happened on Highway 138, near Gorman, when 83-year-old Milton Bacon driving a Subaru Forester drove into oncoming traffic and collided with the fire crew’s truck. Several firefighters as well as the crew foreman were hospitalized, four were seriously injured and in critical condition. Mr. Macon, and Fernando Sanchez of San Diego, one of the crew members who was ejected from his vehicle, were both killed.
Our sympathy goes out to the families and friends of the deceased
Applicable California Law
Those who sustained injuries as well as the heirs of the deceased will have personal injury and wrongful death claims against Mr. Bacon’s estate (see my prior Blog post Escondido Auto Accident Fatally Injures Man In Wheelchair on California’s wrongful death law). In addition, the crew’s foreman having been injured on the job can pursue claims for workers compensation benefits (see my prior Blog post San Diego EMT Fatally Injured In Multi Vehicle Auto Accident for California law on workers compensation/injury law). Furthermore, since the members of the fire crew were in the custody and control of the corrections department when they were injured or killed, they and their heirs also have potential claims against the corrections department and or the county Fire Department if the vehicle they were riding in was unsafe and contributed to their injuries. If so, a timely claim must be filed with the proper agencies as required by the government claims statutes pursuant to Government code section 945.4.
Regardless of who was at fault for the accident, the loss of life and serious injuries are devastating. Consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney is critical in order to properly handle auto accidents and truck accidents resulting in serious injuries or wrongful death.