| Added On August 3, 2011
We are saddened by the loss of two teenagers and an adult motorist who were all killed after a tragic collision took place on Tuesday afternoon. The teenagers were passengers in a van used to transport juvenile probation offenders to and from various hearings and appointments. Around 12:30pm on Tuesday, the van collided with a motorist operating a pick-up truck. The truck driver was killed as were two teenagers riding in the van.
Various outlets are reporting that the teenagers were not wearing any seatbelts or restraints when the accident took place, resulting in their bodies being thrown from the vehicles and landing on the pavement. The van perpetrated the accident by slamming into the rear of the pickup truck. Both vehicles traveled a ways and ended up in a muddy cornfield nearby.
Other teenagers were also present in the van and suffered moderate injuries. All were taken to a nearby hospital for evaluation.
The juveniles were reportedly traveling back to the facility after completing their daily work detail- likely to complete community service requirements.
We cannot emphasize enough the importance of always wearing a seat belt when traveling in any vehicle. It does not matter if you are the driver, the front-seat passenger or in the third row back in a 15-passenger van- always buckle up! Those choosing not to wear a seatbelt are facing a significant risk of death or serious bodily injury in the event the vehicle is involved in an accident. Many lives have been saved by seatbelts that would otherwise have resulted in a tragic traffic fatality.
Wearing a seatbelt is not only smart, it is California law. If a police officer spots a motorist who is otherwise obeying the law but not wearing a seatbelt, the officer can stop the motorist and issue a ticket for violating the seatbelt statute. Under California’s Mandatory Seatbelt Law, the fine for first-time offenders is $25 and it rises to $50 consecutive fines. This amount does not include costs and fees and the average seatbelt violation costs around $75-$100.