Family files wrongful death suit over highway worker's death

Family files wrongful death suit over highway worker's death

The family of a freeway worker who was killed by a suspected drunken driver has filed a wrongful death suit against the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), the California Highway Patrol (CHP) and the construction company that employed the worker. The worker was working on an interstate highway in April 2012 when a vehicle sped through the construction zone at 60 mph and struck him, throwing him 50 to 75 feet. The worker died at the scene and the driver was charged with second-degree murder.

Construction accidents can occur on any construction project. Fatal accidents on a construction project can happen as a result of improper conduct or neglecting to follow safety protocols. Government agencies are legally responsible for implementing safety guidelines and protocols for construction workers. Construction company owners must ensure those protocols are followed to ensure worker safety and prevent work-related deaths and fatalities.

The plaintiff's lawsuit blamed the worker's untimely death on the defendants' failure to exercise proper safety measures. According to the suit, Caltrans and road crews failed to install barricades in accordance with safety protocols. Caltrans has a Standard Plan in place that requires barricades be installed every 2,000 feet across all shoulders and lanes.

The suit claimed that the driver who struck the freeway worker ran over a 2-foot cone and drove about 3,500 from the road closure and construction zone, encountering no additional barricades along the way. In addition, CHP officers were positioned two miles away from the construction zone instead of in front of it, and no detour or lane-closure signs were placed to warn drivers of the road closure.

The family's lawsuit seeks unspecified damages and payment.

Source: The Press Enterprise, CORONA: Freeway worker's family files wrongful death suit, John Asbury, June 7, 2013

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