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Two Dead After Fiery Crash in South L.A.

firefighter with car accident victim

A fiery collision in South Los Angeles claimed two lives on Tuesday, January 26, 2016. The single-car crash reportedly occurred just after 1 a.m. in the 400 block of W. 58th Street. The initial reports suggest that the SUV struck a palm tree on the northeast corner of W. 58th Street and S. Figueroa Street.

It had been traveling northbound on S. Figueroa Street. After it struck the palm tree, the SUV burst into flames. The names of the driver and the occupant were not released and few details are available at this point. The driver and passenger were pronounced dead at the scene.

Investigation is ongoing

According to LAPD Sgt. Allan Radina, it is not believed that drugs or alcohol played a role in causing the crash. However, based on the appearance of the crash site, it is thought that the SUV may have been traveling at a high speed before the collision. “We’re looking at the possibility that he lost control and hit the railroad tracks right there on Slauson and Figueroa, which caused him to lose control and eventually collide into the tree,” said Radina.

During the course of the investigation, it is likely that the officers will examine any available video footage from intersection cameras. However, at this point, it does not appear that any other drivers may have somehow contributed to the crash. Although the speed of the SUV could very well have played a role in the crash, it does not explain why the vehicle caught fire. The investigators may find that there was a defect in a vehicle component that may have contributed to the fire or even the crash itself.

If so, then the surviving family members of the two decedents may choose to file a claim against the manufacturer of the vehicle.

Another possibility involves naming the municipality as the defendant in a lawsuit. The surviving family members may choose this course of action if investigators determine that a defect of the roadway may have contributed to the crash. Since the SUV apparently crossed railroad tracks prior to the crash, it is possible that the road adjacent to the tracks may have been in disrepair. Or, there may have been poor lighting during the nighttime crash or a lack of proper signage. In any of these circumstances, the municipality might be held liable for the tragic loss of life. If the defect occurred as a result of negligence of the railroad company, the surviving family members may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit against that company.

Assisting Los Angeles accident victims

Car accident victims or their surviving family members may have legal recourse in the wake of a collision. With the aid of a qualified attorney, victims can recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, loss of earning capacity, and pain and suffering.

To discuss your legal options with an experienced car accident lawyer in Los Angeles, please call Ellis Law at 1-800-INJURED. The initial consultation is free and there are no legal fees unless we recover on your behalf.