California law enforcement officers and first responders know the risks they place themselves in when they head out to work each day. Not only do they run toward danger and not away from it, but the foundation of the job itself can place them at risk even if the situation does not seem particularly risky. When a person working in a high risk occupation suffers an injury, those who have been hurt and the families who have suffered the loss of a loved one must know how to move forward with a legal filing to maximize their compensation.

An alleged drunk driver hit a California Highway Patrol SUV, killing one of the officers inside and injuring the other. The CHP vehicle was on the side of the highway at the time of the crash. Other first responders went to the scene around midnight after being informed of crash between a CHP vehicle and another vehicle. According to the investigation, the 22-year-old driver of the other vehicle drifted onto the shoulder and hit the CHP car. The driver is believed to have been under the influence of marijuana and alcohol.

The alleged drunk driver was also thought to have been speeding at the time of the crash. The CHP vehicle was said to have been severely damaged and was described as a “compact vehicle” after the accident. The officer who died had a wife and three children between the ages of 2 and 12. The other officer was taken to the hospital with injuries and subsequently released.

While law enforcement officers, fire fighters and those involved in any other job where they are required to place themselves in danger know the jeopardy they face, they do not expect to be involved in a fatal accident. Seeking compensation for injuries in the course of employment as a first responder can be a difficult process. Having legal assistance for the issues that can arise, such as people being shot, suffering burns, having psychological trauma, suffering from occupational illnesses and more is often a key to a case. Those who have been injured or lost a loved one should be aware of their rights and speak to an attorney immediately about a wrongful death case.

Source: ktla.com, “CHP Officer Dies After Suspected DUI Driver Slams Into Back of Patrol SUV on Bay Area Highway,” Tracy Bloom, Dec. 25, 2017