San Mateo County recently settled a wrongful death suit stemming from a truck accident in November 2010 at an intersection within the county. The fatal accident occurred when a tractor-trailer truck collided with a bicyclist. The bicyclist, a 47-year-old woman, died in the collision.
The settlement was reached under a confidentiality agreement and will resolve the case which involved the woman's family, the trucking company, San Mateo County and the state Department of Transportation. When the woman's family originally sued the trucking company under the wrongful death cause of action, the trucking company blamed the county and state, asserting that the intersection where the accident occurred was unsafe.
The state designed the intersection, but San Mateo County is responsible for its maintenance and upkeep. After the trucking company sued the county and state, the woman's family did the same on similar grounds.
San Mateo County intended to stand and fight against those allegations, stating that there was nothing unsafe about the intersection. The settlement will end all aspects of the litigation resulting from the accident.
The sad truth about accidents -- like the one involved in this settlement -- is that there is usually a negligent party to be held responsible. When there is a cause of action for wrongful death, the victim's family should receive compensation for the loss of a loved one, consisting of damages for pain and suffering as well as loss of companionship or even income.
The confidentiality agreement of the settlement in this case may keep our San Mateo County readers from ever knowing the details, but hopefully the victim's family received some measure of closure and compensation after the tragic loss of a loved one.
Source: The Almanac, "Lawsuit settled in cyclist's death on Alpine Road," Dave Boyce, May 24, 2012