Pedestrian Accidents and Crosswalks
Taking a leisurely walk, going for a run, and walking to and from school or work offers many health benefits as well as environmental advantages. Walking and running can also be hazardous when pedestrians collide with motor vehicles. In 2017, close to 6,000 people died and thousands more were injured in pedestrian accidents.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website provides an assortment of pedestrian safety resources aimed to help reduce the number of pedestrian deaths that occur each year. The NHTSA urges drivers and pedestrians alike to follow the rules of the road to ensure the safety of all those walking, jogging, bicycling, and strolling along roadways.
New Jersey Pedestrian Laws and Crosswalks
One of the greatest deterrents to pedestrian accidents and fatalities are crosswalks. Crosswalks are clearly marked areas on busy streets and highways where pedestrians can cross safely. New Jersey law requires all motorists to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and come to a complete stop until all those crossing the street have reached the other side. Failure to do so can result in hefty fines and penalties, including two points on the driver’s license, $200 fine, 15 days of community service, and insurance surcharges.
New Jersey also mandates that pedestrians crossing the road outside of a designated crosswalk or across an intersection still have the right of way. All motorists must come to a complete stop to allow pedestrians to cross the intersection. Anyone who passes a vehicle that is stopped is in violation of this New Jersey pedestrian law.
New Jersey also requires pedestrians to yield to traffic when crossing a roadway where there are no designated crosswalks, or when there are traffic signals or law enforcement officials directing traffic. Pedestrians must follow the same rules of the road as motorists to ensure their own safety as well as everyone else in the vicinity.
Causes and Casualties of Pedestrian Accidents
A pedestrian accident involving a motor vehicle is a devastating event. The sheer weight, speed, and force of a car or truck colliding with a pedestrian can cause catastrophic injuries, such as:
- Head, neck, and spine injuries
- Brain damage
- Permanent disability
- Broken bones
- Lacerations, cuts, scrapes, and road rash
- Sprained or torn ligaments and tendons
- Internal organ damage and internal bleeding
- Nerve damage
In a large majority of cases, pedestrian accidents are preventable. The main causes of serious and fatal pedestrian accidents include:
- Distracted drivers
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Drowsy driving
- Failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks, intersections, and bicycle paths
- Failure to stop at traffic lights, stop signs, and signals
- Adverse weather conditions
- Lack of directional signs or stop lights
In most pedestrian accidents, the motorist is at fault and liable for injuries and damages. When a pedestrian accident occurs, victims should consult with an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer to ensure that their legal rights are protected and that they claim the maximum amount of compensation available for their injuries.
New Brunswick Pedestrian Accident Lawyers at the Law Offices of Harold J. Gerr Help Injured Victims Claim Compensation
If you have been a victim of a pedestrian accident, call the New Brunswick pedestrian accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Harold J. Gerr at 877-249-4600 or 732-249-4600, or contact us online to schedule a free consultation today. Our Highland Park, New Jersey offices serve clients in New Brunswick, Somerset, Piscataway, Edison, South River, Sayreville, Metuchen, East Brunswick, South Plainfield, Fords, Middlesex, Old Bridge, Iselin, Bound Brook, Perth Amboy, and Colonia.