Pedestrian Accident Attorneys in New Jersey
Pedestrians are in danger on New Jersey streets. The state knows the risks for pedestrians and has enacted various laws that motorists must follow to keep pedestrians safe. Motorists who do not abide by these laws can face civil and criminal repercussions, especially when a pedestrian suffers an injury.
New Jersey drivers owe pedestrians a duty of care, and when they breach this duty, they can be civilly liable. As a New Jersey pedestrian, you have the right to use the road safely, though pedestrians regularly suffer injuries in accidents.
If you suffer pedestrian accident injuries in Bergen, Essex, Morris, or Hudson County, the legal team of Reinartz Law Firm is ready to help. We obtain millions of dollars for clients with severe injuries, so reach out today to learn about your rights.
Table of Contents
- Who is at risk?
- What causes pedestrian accidents?
- Pedestrian accident injuries in New Jersey
- New Jersey Pedestrian Laws
- Compensation options after an accident
- The Reinartz Law Firm Can Help You.
Who is at risk?
New Jersey accident statistics are alarming, as 27 percent of all traffic accident deaths involved a pedestrian in one year. Pedestrian accidents are on the rise everywhere, and you must stay vigilant.
Any pedestrian who is walking around New Jersey has the potential to be in a pedestrian accident. However, some age groups suffer higher traffic-related deaths than others. Elderly adults over 65 accounts for 20 percent of all pedestrian accident deaths. Children between 10 and 14 are also at a higher risk of severe pedestrian accidents.
Two-thirds of all pedestrian deaths are among males in comparison to females. Walking at night in busy parts of town also poses a significant risk to pedestrians.
In Bergen County alone, the following intersections are particularly dangerous for pedestrians:
- Prospect and Essex in Hackensack
- Summit and Essex in Hackensack
- Golf and East Passaic in Hackensack
- Hillsdale and Broadway in Hillsdale
- East Railroad and Passaic in Hackensack
- Cedar and River in Teaneck
- River and West Main in Bogota
- Cedar and Broad in Teaneck
- Polifly and Essex in Hackensack
- South Summit and W. Pleasantview in Hackensack
- Prospect and Passaic in Hackensack
- Jackson and Union in Rutherford
- Grand and West Palisades in Englewood
- Wyckoff and Monroe in Wyckoff
- Teaneck and East Forest in Teaneck
- Cedar and Main in Ridgefield Park
Even when you do not fall into these risk categories or walk in these dangerous places, you aren't safe from negligent drivers. A motorist can strike any pedestrian in any location. While you can stay vigilant while walking, drivers owe you an immense duty to keep you safe.
What causes pedestrian accidents?
While there are many ways a pedestrian accident can happen, the underlying cause is always the same: negligence.
In some rare instances, there can be road or weather conditions that cause an accident, such as:
- Inclement weather causing poor visibility
- Arterial roadways
- Poorly indicated construction zones
- Driving recklessly to the weather conditions
- Unmarked streets or crosswalks
Even in these cases, drivers must decide to adjust their driving habits to account for the conditions. Drivers should also decide to pull over if they do not think their skills are adequate to get through the current situation. Their failure to adjust their driving or pull over can lead to a tragic accident involving a pedestrian.
Driver error or negligence manifests in other ways, such as:
- Running a red light: The lights at intersections indicate who has the right of way. When the light is red, that means that vehicles cannot proceed. When drivers blatantly ignore the glaring red light, they place everyone around them in danger. When a driver takes a red light, other vehicles with a green light are already on the road. Similarly, pedestrians are already making their way into the crosswalk.
- Ignoring a stop sign: Various streets do not need a traffic light but instead use stop signs. Reckless drivers will ignore these stop signs, which leads to a pedestrian suffering harm.
- Speeding: A driver who is speeding will be unable to see pedestrians or hazards on the road. When they see a pedestrian crossing, it is too late to stop, and the pedestrian will be seriously injured. Speeding also involves a driver going too fast for the current weather or road conditions. The driver can be going at the speed limit, but it is too fast for a slippery road.
- DUI: Any kind of impairment is dangerous, but alcohol is one of the worst. The driver’s vision and judgment are questionable. Many drivers will think that a pedestrian is another object and will not show them the duty of care they deserve. A drunk driving accident can result in not only civil penalties but criminal penalties as well.
- Distractions: There are many distractions that a driver will encounter. The key is to minimize these distractions and not take their hands, eyes, or mind off the road. A text message takes a driver’s attention off the road for 4.6 seconds. Within those few seconds, a serious accident can occur.
- Ignoring right of way: New Jersey has the very particular right of way laws regarding pedestrian safety. Many drivers decide to drive the moment the pedestrian steps past their vehicle, but New Jersey law requires motorists to stop until the pedestrian finishes crossing the intersection. Drivers who do not give pedestrians the right of way when it is necessary to cause fatalities.
- Road conditions: New Jersey experiences various weather conditions throughout the year. Local municipalities are in charge of keeping roads clear. One of the few times a government agency can be held liable for an accident is when there are unsafe road conditions, and they are incorrectly fixed.
- Night-time driving: Drivers are more reckless at night. They assume fewer vehicles and people are on the road and are more likely to drive under the influence, speed, or participate in other reckless behavior. Visibility is lower at night; instead of driving recklessly, motorists should drive more carefully.
- Drowsy driving: Sleep is necessary for our health and cognitive function. Adults must get a minimum of eight hours of sleep for a full rest. Anything less than that can cause a driver to experience fatigue. Usually, drowsy drivers are awake for over 18 hours a day. However, anytime a driver doesn't get sufficient sleep and gets behind the wheel, they endanger the lives of everyone around them. Drowsy driving has the same effect as driving while drinking. Specific careers put drivers at higher risk for drowsy driving. However, tired drivers should not get behind the wheel. They will need to get some rest before they can drive.
- Reckless driving: A general disregard for traffic laws is reckless driving. Many situations fall under the reckless driving umbrella. Some drivers are in such a hurry to get to their destination that they will weave in and out of heavy traffic or change lanes without signaling. Drivers will also follow too closely and try to intimidate others on the road. These and other reckless actions can result in multi-incident collisions like two cars veering off the road and striking the traffic light where a pedestrian is waiting to cross.
Pedestrians have the right to walk safely on the sidewalk and cross the street at any hour and at any intersection. Drivers are responsible for staying alert to their surroundings and respecting every car, truck, bike, and pedestrian they encounter. The lack of respect for others is what leads to these horrific accidents. You do not need to suffer through this situation alone. You must enlist the help of a New Jersey pedestrian accident lawyer.
Pedestrian accident injuries in New Jersey
The most severe injuries result from a pedestrian accident. Often the outcome we see in these accidents is death. Victims who do survive will suffer lifelong pain from their injuries.
Some of the most common injuries in New Jersey pedestrian accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Head and neck trauma
- Pelvic fractures
- Broken bones
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Loss of limb
- Road rash
- Soft tissue damage
There is also the psychological trauma that accident victims will live with, like PTSD and anxiety. Many victims will turn inward and can suffer depression. Many of these injuries will alter the way you accomplish daily tasks, which is beyond difficult to bear for a once non-disabled person. Therapy and counseling can help victims cope with their new way of life.
Recovery is long, and you will never return to the way you were before. Many permanent injuries will require long-term care. Medical treatment is expensive, especially when you must live the rest of your life getting medical care. In an emergent situation, the hospital will run various tests to determine what ailments you suffer. Depending on the findings, you will undergo emergency medical treatment like surgery and other procedures to save your life.
Upon release from the hospital, follow-up care is necessary. You will likely need physical therapy, home health care services, wheelchair access, medical devices, prescription medication, and more. All of these and other treatments are necessary for maximum medical improvement.
Sadly, they may not be enough to get you to your pre-accident condition. Additionally, all of these treatments and procedures are costly. You should not pay for these services when you do not cause a pedestrian accident. Allow our New Jersey pedestrian accident lawyer to fight for the compensation you need to recover and live comfortably after an accident.
New Jersey Pedestrian Laws
Under New Jersey law, drivers must yield the right of way to pedestrians in crosswalks and intersections. Additionally, they must wait for the pedestrian to finish crossing before the vehicle can move. If there is a pedestrian accident, the driver will have failed to exercise due care for the pedestrian.
Another important provision is that a driver who causes a pedestrian accident must stay at the scene until further notice from law enforcement; if they leave the scene of an accident with a pedestrian, that will result in eight points on their driving record. The driver will also face fines and other penalties.
Drivers are responsible for yielding the right of way for pedestrians, even when there is no marked crosswalk. When drivers behave recklessly or carelessly, the harmed pedestrian can file a personal injury claim against them. Pedestrians can recover financial compensation that accounts for their losses. You need a New Jersey pedestrian accident lawyer on your team to look at all the New Jersey pedestrian laws that apply to your pedestrian accident and ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Compensation options after an accident
You will have two main compensation options after a pedestrian accident in New Jersey.
Economic damages such as:
- Medical expenses
- Hospital expense
- Lost income
- Prescription medication costs
- Partial or complete impairment
- Future medical expenses
- Out-of-pocket expenses
Documentation will prove these damages, like medical bills and receipts.
You can receive non-economic damages for:
Non-economic damages will require expert witness testimony to prove. You cannot take on this fight independently. You must call a New Jersey pedestrian accident attorney who has relationships with experts. We will work with experts to find the maximum compensation available for you. The negligent party in your claim must pay for the life-changing damage they cause through their reckless actions.
The Reinartz Law Firm Can Help You.
The New Jersey pedestrian accident lawyers at Reinartz Law Firm always represent accident victims' best interests. The Reinartz Law Firm will do everything in our power to garner a compensation claim covering all of your accident expenses. We will build a case showing irrefutable proof that you did not cause the accident, and the driver who did must be held liable. The New Jersey driver’s insurance company will do anything to delay or deny a claim, and you must have strong legal counsel to ensure this does not happen.
We begin every pedestrian accident claim by conducting a thorough investigation and finding who the liable parties are. We will then assess your losses and damages. We know insurance companies’ tactics to blame accident victims, and we will fight to get you every penny you deserve.
Many provisions and factors can change the outcome of your claim. We will look at all the possibilities and work with you to find an adequate solution. We will look at every avenue to ensure you get the justice you deserve for the negligent actions of another person.
The death of a loved one from a pedestrian accident does not have a price tag, but the party who caused your loved one’s death must not get away with their recklessness. There are many times when accident victims do not survive, leaving families with an immeasurable loss. We provide empathy and understanding to families while also fighting insurance companies aggressively to secure your claim.
We work on a contingency fee basis, so you lose nothing by calling us. After a pedestrian accident in New Jersey, you need to contact a firm that cares and is willing to fight for you.
Call our New Jersey pedestrian accident lawyers today at (201) 778-HURT, or send us a message through our contact page for your free claim evaluation.
The Reinartz Law Firm - Hackensack Office
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