City vehicle’s failure to yield kills 70-year-old woman near UC Berkeley

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Dapree Doyle/File

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1/23/2018: This story has been updated to reflect new information from California Highway Patrol officer Matthew Hamer.

A Berkeley woman was killed in a collision with a city vehicle because of the driver’s failure to yield to a pedestrian in a marked crosswalk Jan. 12.

About 1:21 p.m., California Highway Patrol, or CHP, received calls of a vehicle-pedestrian collision near Fulton Street and Channing Way, according to CHP officer Matthew Hamer. Officers responded and pronounced the pedestrian, 70-year-old Shelly Rideout, dead at the scene about 1:31 p.m.

City spokesperson Matthai Chakko identified the driver as Daryl Brand, who works for the Department of Health, Housing and Community Services. Chakko declined to comment on whether or not Brand would keep her job.

“There was no actions taken from the driver that would determine any type of reckless behavior or disregard for human life,” Hamer said. “It was a tragedy, however.”

CHP has been investigating the incident and so far has found there was “no ill will, (ill) intent or negligence on the side of the driver,” Hamer said.

The vehicle was traveling westbound on Channing Way before it struck the pedestrian, who was traveling northbound on Fulton Street, according to Hamer.

Sewer maintenance equipment was in the intersection of the two streets at the time of the accident, according to Hamer. CHP is currently investigating whether or not the maintenance equipment created an obstruction for visibility.

“We do not believe that alcohol or drugs were a factor in this collision,” Hamer said.

Hamer added that Brand remained at the scene and cooperated. He also confirmed that the primary collision factor was the driver’s failure to yield at a marked crosswalk.

A Berkeley Police Department crime alert released about 2:15 p.m. stated that the intersection was closed because of a “major injury action investigation” and advised motorists to take alternative routes.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates. 

Ani Vahradyan is the university news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @anivahrad.