[Note: The link at the bottom of this page will connect the reader with a video on YouTube showing several vehicles traveling through the crosswalk area in real time in the real world.]



Had the pedestrian been struck after she had "wandered considerably outside of the marked crosswalk” as the jury apparently believed? Was the pedestrian “near the curb” when struck as the three judge appeals court found? Or was the pedestrian, in actuality, plainly and simply almost smack dab in the middle of the crosswalk and far from the curb when hit? You be the judge.

 


 

First, a little refresher course: The diagram on the left shows the Chevron vehicle's path through the intersection. The blue dot is what I believe to be the approximate position of the pedestrian at impact. The red dot represents the pedestrian's approximate landing site on the pavement. 
       The photograph on the the upper right shows the Chevron vehicle with the pedestrian (purple splotch) lying on the pavement in front and to the left of it. 
    The  photo on the bottom (r) reveals what I believe to be a skid mark, which can be seen faintly trailing out from the area of the vehicle's right front tire. If this is indeed a skid mark, it would directly contradict the sworn testimony of the vehicle operator who testified that the car did not skid when he applied the brakes.

 

 
Six stop motion photographs showing a car traveling through the intersection about as the Chevron vehicle had.
 
Imagine that the burgundy car is the Chevron vehicle. Here, as the car begins to straighten out of its left hand turn, the driver is startled to see before him a pedestrian in the crosswalk... 
an instant later the car's front end begins to impact the pedestrian as the driver's foot goes for the brake pedal while... 
the pedestrian's upper body begins to collapse part way up on the hood as the brake is activated and the right front tire begins to skid on the wet pavement. This sudden deceleration propels the pedestrian forward off the car's front end. 

The rear of the car begins a slight fishtail to the right...

as the car continues skidding and the pedestrian is propelled twenty or so feet forward from the impact point to a hard landing on the asphalt, with all of this action occurring in a second or two.

Even with the flattened perspective of these photos, it's obvious that this vehicle is far from the curb, just as the Chevron vehicle had been and just as the accident scene photos and diagrams clearly showed it to be.

The three appeals judges, apparently unable to comprehend the simple and undeniable reality that the diagrams and photos represented, went ahead and unanimously came to the startling conclusion that the pedestrian was near the curb when hit! This meant that their understanding of the most crucial question of the case was 180 degrees out from reality, and that, in turn, made their finding indisputable nonsense. 
This is about where the Chevron vehicle came to a halt. In real time, it took this car less than one second - without braking - to travel the distance shown in this series of photos. 

 

 

    The bottom line to all of this is that if you ask an important question and you want a well-reasoned answer, it's best to ask that question of people who have the competency to answer it. In the case of Got Justice? the important question was what was the pedestrian's position in the intersection at the time of impact. To answer that question with scientific reliability would require that the available evidence be subjected to analysis by people with a knowledge of physics – that is a knowledge of things such as action, reaction, mass, motion and velocity. You shouldn't have to, nor needn't, rely on a jury of twelve scientific know-nothings in-off-the-street to answer the question. The same goes for the appeals judges with their law degrees. Leave other issues of the case up to the jurors and judges, but leave the scientific stuff up to the scientifically trained.
   One idea I have on how to accomplish such a goal would be to assemble, online, a large group of scientifically trained professionals (retirees perhaps) and pay them a nominal fee to get together once in a while with five other randomly selected members to come to a consensus, if possible, of the how and the why  of an accident such as the one described in Got Justice.


Link to YouTube video of the intersection:

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7E4TO6v96A

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