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Pedestrians waiting for a bus critically hurt after car crash

Six people waiting for a rush-hour bus were critically hurt in a car accident last week in South Los Angeles, California, when a man driving 80 mph in the bus lane off the 110 Freeway plowed into them. The 51-year-old driver, who was also injured, failed a field sobriety test, according to officials.

When accidents like this happen, many questions spring to mind: Was it a deliberate act? Did the time of day or weather conditions play a role? Could something have been done to prevent the accident, and could future incidents be prevented?

It seems that these questions have already occurred to officials. The chief of the Los Angeles Metro transportation system announced that he has asked for a review within 60 days of signage along the transit way and other safety issues.

As for the driver, if indeed he was intoxicated, questions will have to be answered as to if his actions could have been curtailed: for example, if he had been drinking at a bar, whoever was serving him might have been able to ascertain if the man had consumed too much alcohol and prevented him from driving.

The people who were injured will likely have a long road to recovery ahead of them. As pedestrians who were merely waiting for a bus, it would seem unlikely that they would be liable for any of their medical expenses. That burden may be borne by the driver of the car and possibly the city of Los Angeles, if it is determined that design or other safety issues of the bus lane setup were contributing factors to the crash.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Driver who hurt 6 on freeway failed field sobriety test, CHP says," Robert J. Lopez, Feb. 23, 2012

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