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A San Jose resident was killed Tuesday while examining his truck on the shoulder of southbound Highway 101. His Dodge Ram pickup was rear-ended by a Toyota Camry driven by 18-year old San Ramon resident Theodore Liang. The collision caused the truck to strike the 54 year old victim, throwing him 75 feet. He died at the scene.

Witnesses say the Camry did not slow down before the collision, which occurred at 55 MPH. The collision caused the gas tank of the pickup to rupture, and firefighters were called to clean-up the leaked fuel, tying up traffic for hours.

After interviewing the driver and examining the collision, investigators said it was not clear whether the Camry veered on to the shoulder intentionally. The driver was not injured, and was not detained after being questioned by authorities. However the driver was reported missing at about 6:30 A.M. by his brother, who said Theodor was despondent and likely at risk.

If you have lost a loved one in an accident caused by another, you may be eligible to seek a remedy and payment. Protect your rights, contact an experienced wrongful death attorney. When you call the law offices of O’Connor, Runckel & O’Malley, you will be talking with an attorney who has spoke with hundreds of people in your similar circumstance. You will be treated with the respect and sympathy you need during your time of heartbreak and anguish. The attorneys at O’Connor, Runckel & O’Malley are well known and respected throughout the legal community and among our clients. From our offices in Contra Costa County, San Francsico and Sacramento, we serve clients throughout Northern California. Our experience and expertise are available to you.

(Source: San Ramon Express, Mercury News)

A Los Altos woman was killed early last month when her bicycle was hit by a 26-wheel big-rig truck near Portola Valley, on Alpine Road. Both Lauren Ward and the semi were approaching Interstate 280, traveling west on Alpine Road when the collision occurred. The family of the victim is suing Castroville-based demolition company, Randazzo Enterprises, and the truck driver, Gabriel Manzur Vera.

The lawsuit states that "Suddenly and without warning, defendant Gabriel Manzur Vera ... negligently drove the aforementioned tractor and trailer rig directly into the path of Lauren Ward's bicycle thereby violating Lauren Ward's right-of-way, causing Lauren Ward's death at approximately 3:45 p.m." Vera has been involved in 3 fatal accidents while on the job, but has never been found at fault. However, Vera and Randazzo Enterprises paid $1.5 million to settle a separate wrongful death suit stemming from a 2007 collision that involved the Vera and a bicyclist in Santa Cruz.

The California Highway Patrol released a report that concluded trucker Vera was not at fault in the fatal crash with cyclist Lauren Ward. The report claims that the collision occurred when Ward "unsafely turned" into the path of the truck as she rode to its "immediate left" in the same right lane of the road. The report does not explain why Ward would turn into the path of the truck, and there are no witnesses to support the CHP Report's conclusion.

In announcing the lawsuit, the lawyer representing the Ward family stated "While the CHP was conducting its investigation, we brought in scientists and other experts to evaluate the circumstances surrounding Lauren's tragic death, and the team disagrees with the CHP's conclusion as to the cause. As a result, (her husband) Bob and the Ward children would like a jury to hear the evidence and decide."

In the fatal collision in 2007, Vera's 26-wheeler collided with John Myslin at the intersection of Mission and Bay streets in Santa Cruz. The police investigation concluded that Vera had been making a right turn when Myslin tried to pass him on the right and cleared Vera of wrongdoing. Myslin's parents disagreed and sued. They later settled with Vera and Randazzo Enterprises for the sum of $1.5 million.

Wrongful death caused by the collision of bicycle with any motor vehicle is a tragedy.  Furthermore, all states guarantee the right to compensation for families and children of those who are killed in a wrongful death accident. If you or a loved one has been involved in such an accident, do not take chances with your family’s future. You need to immediately contact an bicycle collision lawyer.  The attorneys at O’Connor, Runckel & O’Malley have the skill and experience to ensure that individuals and their families receive the financial support necessary to help them move forward with their lives.

(Source: Mercury News, 2 )

MARTINEZ, California

A complete power outage shut down Tesoro's Golden Eagle refinery near Martinez on Wednesday, sending large amounts of hazardous material to the refinery's flares and prompting health officials to issue a Level 3 shelter-in-place warning. Huge flames and a giant cloud of black smoke were visible for miles. The power outage occurred at about 4 p.m..

At about 4:30 p.m. the refinery, working with Contra Costa County health officials, issued a shelter-in-place warning for nearby communities. By about 7 p.m., the shelter-in-place order was reduced to a Level 1 indicating that there was some visible flaring but no off-site impact was expected. Power was restored to the refinery at 7:53 p.m..

The refinery's primary source of power comes from Foster Wheeler, an engineering and construction contractor and power equipment supplier, according to Randy Sawyer, director of the Contra Costa Hazardous Materials program. PG&E ordinarily supplies backup power to the refinery. Although the cause of the failure is still under investigation, it appears that PG&E experienced a power outage, which somehow tripped the Foster Wheeler co-generator, causing it to fail as well.

The Golden Eagle refinery is the second-largest oil refinery in Northern California and has a crude oil capacity of 166,000 barrels per day. The plant produces gasoline, diesel, heavy fuel oils, liquefied petroleum gas and petroleum coke.

One member of the county's hazardous materials team detected a slight odor, but it appeared that the majority of the smoke and pollution was rising into the atmosphere and dissipating. Sawyer said that pollution most likely came down outside the immediate area.

Tesoro Corp. says it is under investigation by the Environment Protection Agency's criminal division for the April 2 explosion and fire that killed seven people at the oil company's Anacortes, Wash., refinery.

Toxic chemical releases into the community can have serious consequences. If you have been seriously injured due to someone else's negligence, contact the personal injury attorneys at the law offices of O’Connor, Runckel & O’Malley today. We provide free consultations in order to evaluate your case and discuss the legal options available to you.

(Source:  ABC News, 2 )

Castro Valley, California

A San Ramon woman was killed on Tuesday when her silver Honda became trapped under the wheels of a semi truck's trailer on eastbound I-580 near Grove Way in an unincorporated part of Castro Valley. The victim, 22 year-old Alyssa Fantozzi, may have died due to blunt-force trauma, according to a CHP spokesmen. The victim's car did catch fire, but the flames were put out by a passerby with a fire extinguisher.

A 1999 Toyota 4Runner was also involved in the crash. The driver of that car, Kathy Le Nguyen, 24, of San Francisco was taken to Kaiser Hayward as a precaution. The driver of the big-rig, Ivan De La Rosa, 35, of Mexicali, was uninjured.

The cause of the accident is still under investigation. Officials say that because of the large number of skid marks it may take a while to determine what happened.

The difference in size and weight from passenger vehicles makes accidents with trucks the most dangerous motor vehicle collisions on the highway. More serious injuries, catastrophic injuries and deaths are a result of truck accidents than all other traffic accidents. If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck or big-rig accident, has suffered catastrophic injury or wrongful death and would like to speak with an attorney, please contact us. We are here to answer your questions and discuss how to protect your legal rights.

The attorneys at O’Connor, Runckel & O’Malley are well known and respected throughout the legal community and among our clients. From our offices in Contra Costa County, we serve clients in San Ramon , and throughout Northern California. Our experience and expertise are available to you.

(Source: Patch)

A Pleasanton man was killed when a Muni bus hit and ran over him and his bicycle. The accident occurred at 5PM on the afternoon of Thursday, October 7th, at the intersection of Sixth and Clement streets in San Francisco. The victim, Derek Allen, was 22 years old.

A tow truck was needed to lift the Muni bus off of the body of Allen and his road bike. As onlookers gathered, the police held up white plastic sheets to hide the body from the view of the public.

The driver of the 44-O'Shaughnessy Muni bus was suspended pending the investigation into the bicycle accident fatality.

Wrongful Death caused by the collision of bicycle with any motor vehicle is a tragedy.  Furthermore, all states guarantee the right to compensation for families and children of those who are killed in a wrongful death accident. If you or a loved one has been involved in such an accident, do not take chances with your family’s future. You need to immediately contact an experienced bicycle accident attorney.  The attorneys at O’Connor, Runckel & O’Malley have the skill and experience to ensure that individuals and their families receive the financial support necessary to help them move forward with their lives.

(Source: SF Weekly)