Glendale pedestrian is struck, killed by truck

NORTHWEST GLENDALE — An 80-year-old man died Friday after he was hit by a work truck that was backing out of a driveway onto a residential street.

The man was walking on the sidewalk in front of a home on the 1200 block of Allen Avenue at about 1 p.m. when he was hit, said Sgt. Pete Pressnall said, adding that there were no eyewitness.

“Unfortunately, on these quiet streets, everyone was inside,” Pressnall said.

When police and paramedics arrived, the man was on the ground beneath the truck, he said.

Firefighters responding to the scene had to cut a piece of his pants from beneath a tire in order to free him, Pressnall said.

It appeared that the man may have suffered broken ribs and a broken femur, he added.

He was taken to Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center and later pronounced dead, Glendale Police Lt. Carl Povilaitis said.

Police are not releasing the man’s name pending notification of next of kin.

Officers sealed off about a half-block on Allen between Kenneth and Glenwood roads for hours while investigators tried to piece together the chain of events.

Officers also interviewed the driver of the truck, who lives on the street and whose name was not released. It is not yet known whether he will face any charges, Povilaitis said.

“It’s just a preliminary investigation at this point,” he said. “The dynamics of where he was hit and where he ended up are still to be determined. And when we do that, we’ll decide whether to pursue it further.”

Neighbors told police that the man lived up the hill from the area and was frequently seen taking walks around the neighborhood, sometimes stopping in the middle of the sidewalk to take breaks, Pressnall said.

It was not clear whether the man was stopped or crossing the driveway when he was hit, but it looked like a cart the man was pushing may have been stopped in the driveway, he said.

The quiet, residential neighborhood lined on both sides with trees is usually safe, said Pailick Arzoo, who lives a few houses down from the scene of the accident.

“It’s a big, huge car, so it’s possible he just didn’t see him,” she said.

“Sometimes the pedestrians don’t watch what they’re doing, and I think it’s the duty of the driver to watch them. But sometimes that fails.”

According to a Glendale Police Department traffic safety report last year, Glendale had the second-worst pedestrian-related accident rate among 51 California cities of similar size and the second-worst rate among pedestrians older than 65.

In March, police arrested an alleged hit-and-run driver hours after a 73-year-old woman was struck as she tried to cross the street. Sevada Grigoryan, 22, faces felony charges related to the accident.

Ara Grigoryan, 20, is facing trial for the death of 24-year-old Elizabeth Sandoval, who was hit while crossing South Glendale Avenue on July 10, 2007.


 CHRIS WIEBE covers public safety and the courts. He may be reached at (818) 637-3232 or by e-mail at chris.wiebe@ latimes.com.

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