Fatal Collision with Bear on Thanksgiving Day

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On Thanksgiving evening, authorities reported a woman and her 19-month-old daughter killed in a car accident in San Andreas, Northern California. Sarah Rae Rohde, 27, was driving a Subaru Impreza between 55 and 60 mph when she hit a black bear on a two-lane rural road in Vallecito. Reportedly, the collision occurred on Highway 4, west of Holiday Mine Road.

At around 6 p.m. on Thursday, the black bear entered the vehicle’s path and was struck and killed. According to a California Highway Patrol news release, the force of the crash sent the bear through the front windshield, causing a “major intrusion into the passenger compartment of the vehicle.”

The impact of the bear killed Rohde and her 19-month-old daughter, Ariana Harris, of Copperopolis. Her 4-year-old son, Julian Harris, also suffered minor injuries and was taken to the UC Davis Medical Center.

Alcohol and drugs were not considered factors in the accident.

Andrew Hughan of the State Department of Fish and Wildlife stated that although car collisions with bears are relatively rare, occurring about twice a year in the region, it is the denning season for bears and they are out “eating anything and everything.”

Rohde’s fiancé, Dajon Harris, said, “It just seems like a freak accident, I don’t know how to reconcile that in my head. I don’t know if I’ll ever be the same.”

Here at Dial & Associates, we offer our deepest condolences to all the family and friends that Sarah Rae Rohde and her daughter Ariana have left behind as they cope with this tragedy.

Dial & Associates handles a wide range of personal injury cases. When you hit a wild animal or domestic animal and sustain serious personal injury, it is worthwhile to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer to get advice as to what you may be able to do. You often have a right to claim accident benefits because hitting a wild animal and suffering injury is still considered to be a motor vehicle accident and opens up your entitlement to accident benefits.

We at Dial & Associates can make sure you receive the full compensation you deserve. Steve Dial is professional, highly respected, and friendly. He will guide you through the complexities of personal injury cases. Give us a call today at (714) 279-8055. Let us help you.

Posted in: Accident News


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