In 2017, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 7,450 pedestrians lost their lives in incidents involving vehicles. Pedestrian injuries and fatalities have become an increasing percentage of all traffic-related personal injuries and fatalities.
In What Situations Are Pedestrian Accidents Most Likely?
There is clearly a risk when traveling across or alongside a roadway, especially those with a high volume of traffic, but pedestrian accidents can even happen in a residential neighborhood. However, a vast majority of pedestrian accidents occur in an urban setting (78%). Most also take place on open road (72%) as opposed to at intersections (18%). Nighttime is by far the most dangerous time to be a pedestrian as 74% of all pedestrian fatalities in 2017 occurred at night. Common reasons for pedestrian accidents to occur include:
- Driving while intoxicated
- Texting or talking on the phone
- Failing to look both ways at a turn
What to Do in the Event of a Pedestrian Accident
We know that any pedestrian accident is likely to be traumatic. However, it is important that you take steps to secure your safety and to preserve evidence. Here are some steps to take after you or a loved one have been involved in a pedestrian accident:
- Contact the Police – It is important to get the authorities on the scene. They know what to look for and how to question the driver and witnesses. Be sure to get the officer’s name and badge number so you can get a copy of the police report.
- Seek Medical Attention – Even if your injuries appear minor or you have no visible injuries, seek medical attention. It is possible you are suffering from an internal injury even though you feel fine. Let the professionals make the medical diagnosis. Failure to seek treatment can submarine your case.
- Gather Evidence – The more information you have, the better off you will be. Make a note of the following:
- Time and location of the accident
- The weather conditions
- The state of the road and any traffic or street lights
- The name, phone number and address of the driver and any witnesses
- Photos of the accident scene, your injuries and any damage to the vehicle
- Contact an Experienced Pedestrian Accident Lawyer – Pedestrian accidents can be complex. Therefore you want a seasoned personal injury lawyer like Craig Rothenberg to help guide you through the process and defend your rights in court.
Note that there is a two-year Statute of Limitations on pedestrian accidents in New Jersey. If the case involves a public entity, you may be subject to the notice requirements of the New Jersey Tort Claims Act. Waiting until the last minute can jeopardize your case and can cause witnesses to change their story and evidence to grow cold. So do not wait to pursue your case.
If a loved one has died as a result of a pedestrian accident, a pedestrian accident lawyer can help you take the steps necessary to file a wrongful death suit against the driver as well as any other legal action that may be required. We pursue these complicated cases with understanding and compassion for the survivors and work to ensure that the perpetrator is brought to justice.
Dealing with the Aftermath of a New Jersey Pedestrian Accident?
At the Law Office of Craig Rothenberg, based in New Brunswick, NJ, we will work tirelessly in pursuit of fair compensation for your injuries. Whether it is monetary compensation for your pain and suffering, lost wages or medical expenses and rehabilitation, we have the experience necessary to ensure you get the support you need.