Drivers Mistaking Gas Pedal for Brakes Cause Death and Injury in San Jose

Drivers Mistaking Gas Pedal for Brakes Cause Death and Injury in San Jose

EMT paramedics in a rescue operation after a car crash

October 20, 2020

Ellis Law Corporation


Two people died and eight others suffered injuries in two eerily similar recent car crashes in San Jose. In both incidents, elderly drivers mistook the gas pedal in their vehicles for the brakes, accelerating their cars into a group of outdoor diners and a food truck, respectively.

Both accidents occurred on October 11, 2020. The first crash happened when a 69-year-old man drove his Toyota 4Runner into diners eating outside the Grand Century Plaza. A witness saw the SUV hurtle across a four-lane road and traffic median, smoke streaming from the tires. A total of nine people, including the driver, were injured, two critically. One woman later died in the hospital.

It is possible the driver experienced a medical emergency prior to the crash, but that has not been confirmed.

Surveillance video shows the white SUV jumping the curbs and speeding toward the Dynasty Chinese Seafood Restaurant, where approximately two dozen patrons were eating outdoors. The aftermath of the crash was chaotic, with some people screaming and running away and others lying motionless in the parking lot.

The restaurant did not have a permit from the city to offer outdoor dining. Had they received official permission to conduct business al fresco, they would have been able to obtain free barriers to protect diners in private parking lots. These metal or concrete barriers are the same type the city uses for road closures.

Food Truck Crash

That evening, an elderly woman hit the gas pedal instead of the brakes on her Ford F-150, causing the truck to strike a pedestrian and crash into a food truck and outdoor dining area. The man hit by the truck died the following day.

In this instance, a witness who was hit by part of the food truck after the impact said the woman had been arguing with a man outside the truck in what appeared a domestic situation. She then tried to leave and sped away, losing control of the vehicle.

Contact a Los Angeles Car Accident Lawyer

The last thing the victims of these particular accidents expected was a car crash. They were not in vehicles, and both instances appear entirely random.

Anyone injured in a car accident caused by another party’s negligence or recklessness should seek legal advice as soon as possible so you may receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Contact the experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyers at Ellis Injury Law for a free consultation. There is never a fee unless you receive compensation.