Case details

Man struck by car while rescuing trapped motorist





Result type

Not present

chest, fracture, leg, neurological, reflex sympathetic, rib
On Dec. 4, 2019, plaintiff Victor Ruvalcava, 33, an airline’s employee, was driving on Interstate 8, in San Diego. He stopped to assist a motorist, Evan Zuleta, who was trapped inside an overturned vehicle. While standing on the roadway, Ruvalcava was struck by a vehicle that was being driven by Ramon White, who was attempting to avoid the overturned vehicle. Ruvalcava suffered of a leg and his rib cage. Ruvalcava sued Zuleta; White; White’s employers, Carey San Diego and Limousine Chauffeur & Guide; and the co-owner of White’s vehicle, Curtis White. The lawsuit alleged that Zuleta and Ramon White were negligent in the operation of their respective vehicles, that Ramon White’s employers were liable because the accident occurred during Ramon White’s performance of his job’s duties, and that Curtis White was vicariously liable for Ramon White’s actions. Plaintiff’s counsel contended that Zuleta was speeding and lost control of his vehicle, causing the initial accident that led to the subsequent accident. Plaintiff’s counsel also contended that Ramon White failed to decelerate upon noticing Ruvalcava and the overturned vehicle. The defendants contended that the accidents were unavoidable., Ruvalcava suffered a fracture of the mid-shaft region of his left leg’s femur. He also suffered fractures of ribs. Ruvalcava was retrieved by an ambulance, and he was transported to a hospital. His left leg’s fracture was addressed via open reduction and internal fixation. His hospitalization lasted three days. Ruvalcava claimed that he has developed complex regional pain syndrome, which is a chronic neurological condition that is typically characterized by severe pain, pathological changes of bone and skin, swollenness, and/or increased sensitivity to physical stimulus. The syndrome is alternately termed “reflex sympathetic dystrophy.” Ruvalcava claimed that he would require neurological treatment. Ruvalcava sought recovery of past and future medical expenses, and he sought recovery of damages for past and future pain and suffering.
Superior Court of San Diego County, San Diego, CA

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