Unfortunately, walker (pedestrian) fatalities have been rising in New Jersey.
For many years, there was a decrease in pedestrian fatalities in New Jersey. That decrease has been attributed to things such as a law requiring drivers to stop for pedestrians in marked crosswalks (instead of just yielding to them). This positive trend, unfortunately, has been going the other way lately.
As noted in northjersey.com
Take this year’s record, for example: Pedestrian deaths rose 11.5 percent to 174 as of Dec. 14 compared to 154 by the same date last year. Driver fatalities increased, too, but much less on a percentage basis — from 310 to 331, nearly 7 percent. (Bicycling deaths remained stable — from 17 each in 2015 and 2016 to 16 so far this year.)
While there has been no hard data as to the exact cause of the increase in deaths, many attribute cell phone usage and texting while driving. We often hear from clients and witnesses that the at-fault driver was “looking down” or “he was on his cell phone” just before the crash occurred.
In addition to these unfortunate death cases, our firm has been seeing an increasing number of pedestrians being struck by vehicles, usually with catastrophic injuries. To make matters worse, there is typically inadequate insurance coverage.
For those interested in the fatal accident statistics in their county or municipality, check out the New Jersey State Police’s Fatal Accident Statistics 2017.
If you have any questions about these types of cases, including whose insurance company pays for what medical bills, feel free to contact us. Be safe out there!
Michael Raff, Esq.