The City of Los Angeles has suffered some severe blows to its pocket book due to lawsuits brought about by victims of accidents caused by poorly planned intersections. Just recently, it was hit with a $23 million judgment after the wrongful death of a prominent scientist. Thomas Guilmette was killed in a motorcycle accident three years ago when he collided with a car on his way to work. The lawsuit argued that the intersection he was killed in was inherently flawed; drivers trying to turn left were forced to pull into the intersection because of impaired visibility caused by a hill and parked cars. The city had apparently considered fixing the blind corner twice in between 2001-2009, but had never taken action. City officials are calling the $23.7 million ruling “outrageous,” and are working to appeal the decision. The judgment was unusually large for such a case, but was successfully awarded because of the fact that the City had addressed the issue before, and had failed to correct it. It wasn’t until after the prominent scientist’s death that they attempted to improve visibility in the intersection by adding a stop sign, and restricting street parking. More recently, the corner of Venice and Robertson boulevards near Culver City have raised concern due to the death of a teenager, David Lindley in 2014. The intersection has a complicated set up, being subject to the heavy traffic on Venice Boulevard, and boasting an entrance to the 10 freeway, and an Expo Line station. So far, the city has installed flashing yellow lights to alert cars of pedestrians. The City of Los Angeles has also announced a series of projects to improve troublesome intersections throughout the city in an attempt to reduce the recorded amount of 19,000 pedestrian/vehicle crashes that have occurred in between 2003-2009. Some of the highest crash rates occur in the downtown L.A. area, especially where metro, car, and foot traffic all come together.
If you or a loved one have fallen victim to injury or wrongful death due to poorly planned intersections in the City of Los Angeles or elsewhere, the lawyers at Hodes Milman Liebeck are there for you in your time of need. Contact us today online at hmlm.com or call 866-730-1976 for a complimentary case evaluation.