2017 got off to a tragic start in Oxnard, California, where a 27-year-old victim was killed in a fatal car accident just days after New Year’s.  Our Ventura car accident lawyers report more on the story.  

One Death, Multiple Injuries in Oxnard Collision with Commercial Truck

On Tuesday, January 3, a fatal accident claimed the life of one unnamed male 27-year-old victim.  The crash occurred around 12:00 P.M. in Oxnard. According to the Oxnard Police Department, the crash site was located near the intersection of Cesar Chavez Drive and North Rose Avenue.  After his family was notified, the victim was later identified as Mario Morales.

Responding officers and medical personnel arrived to find a devastating scene with multiple injuries, damage to multiple vehicles, and one person trapped inside of flaming wreckage.  The collision took place when a northbound Nissan 350Z crashed into an oncoming southbound commercial truck.  This initial collision triggered a chain reaction, causing the truck to collide with a southbound Honda Civic in the adjacent lane.

The truck driver, 45-year-old Reynaldo Lugo, emerged from the vehicle with relatively minor injuries, according to Oxnard Fire Department Battalion Chief Alex Hamilton.  Lugo was subsequently hospitalized, along with the driver of the Honda Civic, 21-year-old Andre Gutierrez, who also survived the multi-vehicle accident.  Both men were reported as being in stable condition following hospitalization.

Sadly, Morales was less fortunate.  Despite medics’ best efforts, he was pronounced dead at the scene of the fiery accident.
The truck accident also involved, to a lesser extent, a fourth vehicle.  However, occupants of the fourth vehicle were largely unharmed by the accident, declining the opportunity to be transported to the hospital.  According to police, numerous vehicles were also struck by flying pieces of debris, though no additional fatalities or serious injuries were reported.

After the crash, police officers stated that it was unclear whether any of the drivers involved in the accident were under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the accident took place.  If they were, they could be facing extremely serious criminal charges under state law.

Several roads were temporarily closed to allow for an investigation.  Rose Avenue was closed across all lanes, stretching from Camino Del Sol to Gonzales Road, until 7:30 P.M., nearly eight hours after the crash occurred.

According to Hamilton, the crash marks the first fatal auto accident to occur in Oxnard this year.  Anyone with information about the deadly crash is encouraged to contact Senior Officer Maria Pena of the Oxnard Police Department at (805) 385-7750, or send an email to maria (dot) pena (at) oxnardpd (dot) org.

How Common Are Fatal Auto Accidents in Ventura County, CA?

Fatal auto accidents are a leading cause of death in the United States, causing more than 3,100 deaths in California alone during 2013 according to statistics supplied by the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS).  Vehicular accidents also led to nearly 157,000 injuries that year — a daily average of about 430 crash-related injuries, or roughly 18 injuries per hour.  That’s equivalent to about one injury occurring every three minutes somewhere on California’s roads.

Yet despite these large numbers, fatal accidents are relatively uncommon in Oxnard.  According to other SWITRS statistics, there were 10 fatal crashes in Oxnard throughout the entire year of 2013, making it surprising and all the more tragic that a deadly crash would occur less than 72 hours into the new year.

Other cities in Ventura County had even lower numbers of fatal crashes during 2013: eight in Thousand Oaks, seven in Ventura, five in Simi Valley, two in Fillmore, and just one in Camarillo and Moorpark.  Of course, any number of fatal accidents is too high, and we should all strive to bring those numbers even lower by driving safely each time we get behind the wheel.

Ventura Car Accident Lawyers Handling Wrongful Death Claims

The Ventura personal injury lawyers at The Law Offices of Bamieh & De Smeth, PLC have more than 22 years of experience representing the survivors of automotive accidents, and the surviving family members and spouses of wrongful death victims.  We handle car accident claims in Oxnard, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, and other communities throughout Ventura County and Santa Barbara County.
By assisting you with a personal injury claim, our attorneys may be able to obtain compensation for your medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages if you were injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident, or other type of vehicular accident in Santa Barbara or Ventura County.  If you lost a loved one to a fatal accident, it may be appropriate to file a claim or, if necessary, take the case to court.  No matter how minor or serious the accident was, our experienced, trusted, and knowledgeable attorneys will be here to help protect your rights as an accident victim while aggressively pursuing the maximum compensation.

To discuss your car, motorcycle, or truck accident claim in a free consultation with a qualified attorney, contact The Law Offices of Bamieh & De Smeth, PLC at (805) 643-5555.