Sacramento Accidents and Street Laborers


Traveling on roads and sidewalks is a routine part of daily life for most individuals. Yet, what may appear as a mundane activity can be perilous, often resulting in devastating auto accidents that lead to severe injuries or even fatalities. For some residents, however, these thoroughfares are not just avenues for commuting; they serve as their workplace.

Street Laborers: A High-Risk Occupation

People carrying out work-related tasks on public streets confront significant dangers that typically evade motorists and pedestrians. Whether it's construction crews toiling away on bustling streets or police officers expertly directing traffic, these dedicated professionals routinely grapple with the looming risk of grave injury or, worse—a tragic collision with a driver who neglects to exercise due care.

Legal Protections for Street Workers

Under the law, those laboring in the streets possess a legal entitlement: the presumption that motor vehicle operators will exercise reasonable control over their vehicles when approaching them. Drivers, in turn, bear a legal duty to remain vigilant for street laborers and take measures to avoid any contact with them. Should a worker sustain an injury due to a vehicular incident, they typically have the right to seek compensation for their losses.

Unique Privileges for Street Workers

The nature of jobs performed on or near roadways endows these employees with unique privileges that are not readily available to ordinary pedestrians. For instance, a typical pedestrian must often exercise caution by checking for oncoming traffic before entering the road. However, negligence laws in California recognize that street laborers, such as roadwork crews and police officers directing traffic, must allocate their attention to their work, potentially hindering their ability to exercise the same level of caution as someone merely standing on a busy street.

Exemptions from Duty to Look for Traffic

In various court decisions, specific categories of workers have been identified as exempt from the duty to actively monitor traffic while performing their duties. Some of these categories include:

  • Telephone repair company employees
  • Streetcar track workers
  • Construction workers
  • Law enforcement officers

In cases where pedestrians sustain injuries, those held responsible for the accident may attempt to argue that the injured party contributed to the situation through their own negligence. This is a common defense strategy, particularly in cases involving workers or other pedestrians who have suffered harm. Therefore, it becomes crucial to retain legal representation capable of persuasively demonstrating that the opposing party's actions primarily caused the resulting accident.

California's Comparative Negligence Framework

California employs a "pure comparative negligence" analysis when apportioning liability involving multiple contributing factors. This means that even if a person made some mistakes leading to an accident, they may still be entitled to recover compensation for their losses. In other words, a negligent party cannot escape responsibility for providing compensation simply by asserting that the injured party bears some blame.

Seek Legal Counsel for Your Personal Injury Case

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in an accident and wish to explore your legal options, do not hesitate to consult with an experienced Sacramento Personal Injury Attorney. You can reach us at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 to arrange a free consultation and receive guidance on your potential legal recourse. Your well-being and rights deserve to be protected.

Editor's Note: updated 11.2.23 Image by s m anamul rezwan from Pixabay [cs 557]

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