Dangerous Roadway Case Results
We think results speak louder than words and just a few examples of our results in dangerous road cases, include:
In 2004, Arash Homampour obtained a $37.5 million verdict from a San Bernardino jury in a case against the City of Fontana for the wrongful death of Karen Medina (a 14 year old girl). It was an extremely difficult liability case where the young girls parents were alleging that the roadway was dangerous because it lacked sidewalks so that students could walk home safely from school. An article on this verdict can be found here.
In 2015, Arash tried a difficult liability case against State of California, Dept. of Transportation in Ventura County Superior Court. A group of motorcylists were traveling Northbound on Route 33 in Ojai when another group of riders traveling Southbound crossed over hitting his clients’ father/husband head on, killing him. We alleged that the other rider that crossed over and hit our decedent head had taken the curve too fast because there were no warning signs informing that he was to encounter an unusual hairpin curve and needed to reduce his speed to 30mph.
In pre-trial discovery, we established that the State knew the location needed critical warning signs and that preventable accident after preventable accident occurred at this specific location because of its unusual characteristics. The State contended that the incident was solely the fault of an inexperienced motorcyclist. The jury disagreed and awarded the family $14.2 million in wrongful death damages and allocated 90% fault to the State.
This case was particularly gratifying because it was uncovered that there was a 2 year backlog in getting accident data into Caltrans’ database resulting in Caltrans not seeing in real time the number of accidents occuring at various locations. However, we showed Caltrans how it had the ability to get current data by working with the CHP and other state agencies that maintained their own current databases.
In 2011, Arash Homampour obtained a $6.1 million settlement in a lawsuit against the County of Los Angeles. It involved a very difficult liability single vehicle incident where Plaintiff ran off the road and down an embankment. We alleged that the roadway was dangerous because it lacked a guardrail. Defendant County alleged that it was not responsible for the road as it was on Federal land, that the road was safe and that Plaintiff ran off the road because he was tired and/or impaired from narcotics (he tested positive for opiates.)
The County settled the case because it recognized that this was a location where a jury could easily conclude that guardrails should have been installed as there was an extensive history of motorists running off the road and guardrails were designed to prevent the very incident that occurred.
In 2011, Arash Homampour obtained a $4.2 million jury verdict against Caltrans in a very difficult liability single vehicle incident case where Plaintiffs took a curve too fast on their motorcycle and lost control. We alleged that the road was a dangerous condition of public property because a curve ahead/speed reduction sign was missing. Plaintiffs had orthopedic injuries and Plaintiff husband had a disputed brain injury. Caltrans offered only $25,000 to settle the case.
Trial was in Nevada County, California, an otherwise conservative jurisdiction where the trial judge thought we would be defensed and/or receive a very low award. But, Arash was successful in getting jurors to understand that the State had a responsibility to keep the roads safe and its own signs up. Arash was able to show the State how it could use its own photo-log system (where it takes street view pictures of all state roads in California) to make sure roads were safe. Arash showed how the State’s own photographs showed that the critical sign had been missing for years but no one at Caltrans caught it.
The jury found in favor of the Plaintiffs and against the State because they recognized that the missing signs were designed to prevent exactly what happened. More details on this result can be found here.
In 2007, Arash Homampour was lead attorney on a dangerous condition of public property case against the State of California for its failure to install median barriers to prevent cross-over accidents on Highway 126 between the town of Santa Paula and Fillmore. His client was a passenger in a vehicle that for reasons unknown crossed over into opposing traffic causing him to suffer effective permanent blindness.
Discovery in the case revealed that the State had mandated back in 1995 in an internal memo for its own staff to monitor this stretch of the highway to see if an interim measure of rumble strips would decrease the numbers of crossovers. But, when the rumble strips did not work and crossover accidents continued, the State did not take action because it claims it lost the memo. It claimed it found the memo only because of Plaintiff’s discovery requests in the litigation. The State never monitored this stretch of the freeway, erroneously believing it was covered by State reporting when it was not. It allegedly allowed injury after injury and death after death to happen.
Arash then deposed virtually every engineer involved in this process (current and former employees) at Caltrans and developed sufficient evidence to defeat the State’s summary judgment motion.
The case settled for $3 million because Arash uncovered so much bad evidence and testimony. Arash was very proud of this result because Plaintiff (who had a wife and 5 children back in Mexico) was despondent over his blindness and inability to work. With his settlement, he had the resources to provide for his family, get the medical care he needed and to set up an environment where he can thrive despite his blindness. However, even more gratifying was the fact that the State of California announced after the settlement that it would install median barriers on Route 126 in between the towns of Fillmore and Santa Paula.
In 2011, Arash Homampour obtained a $2.1 million settlement in a lawsuit against a negligent driver and the City of Ontario. A driver made a left turn onto southbound Grove Avenue directly in front of the vehicle driven by Plaintiffs. Plaintiffs’ vehicle overturned and one of the passengers was ejected (he was not wearing his seatbelt.)
We contended that the driver was negligent for failing to yield to oncoming traffic. We alleged that the Defendant City of Ontario allowed a dangerous condition of public property to exist as it should have prevented left turns onto Grove Avenue because of sight line restrictions and the inability to safely execute the turn. The City had documented these issues before the incident but failed to keep track of the accident history that put it on notice that it had to prevent left turns.
The defendant argued that no dangerous condition existed at the subject intersection. It also contended that the incident was solely or completely the fault of the driver who it alleged was speeding at 65 mph, not paying attention and negligent for allowing the minor to ride in the vehicle without securing his seat belt.
Our lawyers not only know how the handle dangerous roadway cases, but also know how to win them. Our attorneys immediately begin building your case, preserving and examining evidence for the strongest claim possible. We are accomplished trial lawyers who will take all necessary steps to obtain fair and full compensation for your injuries.
To talk to one of our Los Angeles dangerous roadway lawyers, call 323-658-8077 or toll free 877-827-2748. Or, if you prefer, send us an email by clicking on the red button below.
Initial consultations are free and our multilingual staff speaks Spanish, Farsi and Armenian.
We take cases on a contingency — which means there is no fee if there is no recovery.
We also can handle complex cases via attorney referral.