Steve Orellana Jr., Celestino Fuentes, and Isaiah Sanchez killed in high-speed crash in Winnetka

Posted: July 6, 2022

WINNETKA, LOS ANGELES, CA (July 6, 2022) – Steve Orellana Jr., 22, of Reseda, Celestino Fuentes, 22, of Burbank, and Isaiah Sanchez, 23 were identified by the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office as the men who died in a high-speed crash Sunday night.

The Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a call on the 19700 block of Vanowen Street around 9 p.m., where an accident involving three vehicles took place, says NBC 4.

Orellana, Fuentes, and Sanchez were three of four passengers in an SUV that was traveling at 65-70 mph in a 35-mph zone when they hit a dip in the road around Corbin Avenue and lost control of their vehicle.

The sudden loss of control caused the SUV to clip a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck head on before tumbling down the road and hitting an Audi. The Toyota was carrying four passengers, and the Audi carried two passengers – a husband and wife.

Steve Orellana Jr., Celestino Fuentes, and Isaiah Sanchez were ejected from their SUV and killed, while a fourth passenger who was wearing a seatbelt survived with only minor injuries.

Four passengers in the Toyota truck were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to KTVZ, while the two passengers in the Audi–a husband and his pregnant wife–were taken to the hospital as a precaution. Their condition is currently unknown.

Liability In Winnetka Car Accidents

Despite improved safety measures for cars, motor vehicle accidents remain one of the leading causes of serious injury and death in the United States.  According to the CDC, “more than 32,000 people are killed and 2 million are injured each year from motor vehicle crashes.” There are a number of factors that could potentially contribute to a car accident including:

  • Speeding
  • Distracted driving
  • Inclement weather
  • Dangerous turns
  • Poorly designed roadways

All drivers have a legal obligation to exercise due care in order to avoid causing accidents. This is especially true for commercial drivers that work for a city. A number of collisions are due to drivers that make dangerous left turns. Pursuant to California Vehicle Code 21801, the driver of any vehicle intending to turn left must yield the right of way traveling from the opposite direction close enough to pose a hazard.

If a negligent driver worked for a city, that city could potentially be liable in the event of an accident. Generally speaking, employers are vicariously liable for the negligent actions of their employees – insofar as those employees were working within the course and scope of their job duties. There are a number of steps that should be taken after a car accident.

  • Photos of the accident site should be taken.
  • Surveillance footage should be sought.
  • Medical records should be preserved.
  • Eye witnesses should be interviewed.
  • A thorough independent investigation should be conducted.

The family of any victim that has died in a car accident may have legal recourse through a bodily injury claim. Damages in a civil claim can help cover lost wages, medical bills and funeral expenses. It is essential that evidence is properly preserved after a car accident. A car accident attorney can examine all of the facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.

Investigating A Winnetka Car Accident

We at West Coast Trial Lawyers extend our deepest condolences to the families of Steve Orellana Jr., Celestino Fuentes, and Isaiah Sanchez. Any person that may have information about what happened should reach out to the police. A thorough investigation must be conducted for the sake of all who have lost so much.

Do you need more information about a Winnetka car accident? Our team of personal injury attorneys are here to answer any questions that you may have. We care deeply that accident victims are aware of their rights and that negligent drivers are held to account for their actions. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into an accident we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at (844) 966-0965.


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