Shi Yu, 40, of Monterey Park Died In Ontario Tractor-Trailer Truck Accident On Guasti Road Near Cleveland Road
SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, CALIFORNIA (October 3, 2021) – A driver identified as Shi Yu has tragically died in a semi-truck accident on Guasti Road not far from Cleveland Road.
California Highway Patrol are saying that the collision took place around 2:45 p.m. on Monday. Shi X. Yu was traveling in a minivan when they collided with the side of a semi-truck that was pulling into the roadway.
Firefighters and paramedics were called to the scene of the collision to help the victim. Shi Yu was extricated from their vehicle and life-saving measures were attempted.
Despite the best effort of first responders, the driver of the minivan died following the collision. Police interviewed the driver of the semi-truck who remained at the scene.
A full investigation into the Ontario collision that killed Shi X. Yu remains ongoing at this time.
Liability In Ontario Semi-Truck Accidents
Nearly 5,000 people are killed every year in semi-truck accidents. There has been a modest increase year-over-year in truck collisions following 2009. The economy was growing and people were buying more goods. The pandemic caused a modest dip in collisions – mostly because people were spending more time at home. But as more people are returning to work and going out once again, truck accidents have picked back up. The FMCSA has identified three critical events that proceed the vast majority of truck accidents.
- Travel Lane: In 32% of all truck accidents the driver of a truck ran out of room in their lane or went into another lane.
- Loss of Control: In 29% of all truck accidents the driver lost control of the truck due to either cargo shift, speeding, vehicle system failures or inclement weather.
- Rear-End Collisions: In 22% of all truck accidents the truck hit the rear of another vehicle in their travel lane.
Truck drivers are held to a very high standard in terms of safety. They must obtain a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) and pass both a knowledge and skills test. According to the FMCSA, “CDL holders are held to a higher standard when operating any type of motor vehicle on public roads.” Among other things, committing a serious traffic infraction may jeopardize a person’s ability to maintain a CDL. Most of the rules that govern truck drivers at the federal level are within Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
- Under Title 49 regulations no person shall drive a commercial truck while they are impaired through fatigue or illness.
- Under Title 49 regulations no person shall operating a commercial truck unless the truck and its component parts are in good working condition.
- Under Title 49 regulations no personal operate a commercial truck while being under the influence of any Schedule 1 substance.
Truck drivers have a legal obligation to exercise due care in order to avoid causing accidents. This is especially true when they are turning onto a roadway. According to California Vehicle Code 21804, the driver of any vehicle about to enter or cross a highway from any public or private road must yield the right of way to all traffic close enough so as to pose an immediate hazard. Drivers that abruptly turn into traffic in violation of a vehicle code are typically presumed to be at fault in the event of a crash.
Consider, for example, the California civil jury instructions explained in Frediani v. Ota. As outlined by the California Court of Appeal, “If a party to this action violated any of the sections of the Vehicle Code just read to you, a presumption arises that he was negligent.” The presumption, however, is not absolute and could be overcome by evidence showing that a particular course of action was justifiable under the circumstances. Depending on the specific facts of any case liability for a collision could extend beyond a truck driver.
Generally speaking, companies in California are typically liable for the negligent conduct of their employees. This is generally true insofar as the tortious act fell within the course and scope of the worker’s employment Perez v. Van Groningen & Sons, Inc. (California Supreme Court, 1986) 41 Cal.3d 962. However, many truck companies will often try to limit their exposure to liability by hiring truck drivers as “independent contractors.” There are a number of steps that should be taken after any semi-truck accident.
- Photos of the accident site should be taken.
- Surveillance footage should be sought.
- A truck driver’s work records should be examined.
- A truck’s event data recorder (EDR) should be sought. A truck’s EDR can give useful insight into what a truck driver was doing prior to a collision.
The family of any victim that died in a semi-truck accident may be able to seek justice through a wrongful death claim. Damages in a civil claim can help with the sudden and unexpected costs often associated with the loss of a loved one. To win any civil claim plaintiffs will typically be required to demonstrate negligence. Sadly, though, truck companies will often fight extremely hard to deny liability for any accident. A truck accident attorney can examine all of the unique facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.
Investigating An Ontario Semi-Truck Accident
We at West Coast Trial Lawyers extend our deepest condolences to the family of Shi Yu. Any person that may have information about what happened should reach out to police. There needs to be a thorough investigation for the sake of all who have lost so much.
This accident raises a number of important safety questions. Did the truck driver involved in this crash get proper training? Were they distracted? Could this collision have been prevented? Most truck accidents are preventable when truck drivers obey traffic regulations and yield the right of way to nearby vehicles before turning into roadways.