Be Safe Crossing the Street During Winter
When it comes to winter, one of the most popular pastimes is window shopping. City and town centers all over New Jersey will be decorated, and shops and malls will be offering exciting deals. Unfortunately, the rise in shoppers comes with an increase in pedestrian accidents, and what should be a time of happiness and cheer can too often turn tragic.
The facts about pedestrian injuries and fatalities in this country are shocking. In 2013, 4,735 pedestrians were killed in traffic incidents in the United States, meaning on average one crash-related pedestrian death every 2 hours. On top of that, more than 150,000 pedestrians were treated in emergency rooms for non-fatal crash-related injuries in 2013.
Sadly, the elderly and children under the age of 14 are most at risk. Pedestrians aged 65 and older accounted for 19% of all pedestrian deaths and an estimated 10% of all injuries in 2013. At the same time, one in every five children under the age of 14 who was killed in a traffic crash was a pedestrian.
There are many causes of traffic accidents that involve pedestrian injuries and fatalities. Statistics indicate the majority of pedestrian deaths occur in urban areas, non-intersection locations, and at night. Alcohol also plays a significant role. Alcohol involvement for either the driver or the pedestrian was reported in 49% of the traffic crashes that resulted in pedestrian deaths.
No one wants to contemplate a tragedy during winter, but for those who have suffered such an accident, the ramifications can be life-altering. Victims often must cope with expensive medical bills, rehabilitation, lost wages, prescriptions drugs, and emotional pain and suffering. Making matters worse, dealing with insurance companies that want to mitigate their losses as much as possible may lead to victims being coerced into settling for much less than they deserve.
Whatever the circumstances, if you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a traffic accident as a pedestrian, it is imperative that you consult an attorney before signing anything from an insurance company. The truth is that as the victim, you actually have the burden of proof when it comes to establishing liability. This means that you must be able to present evidence indicating the other party was at fault. A resourceful attorney will be able to conduct a thorough investigation in order to identify and retain evidence that can later be used to support your claim.
To learn more about the compensation you are entitled to as an injured pedestrian, contact the New Jersey pedestrian collision attorneys at Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. For over 20 years, we have fought for the rights of injury victims in New Jersey, winning them substantial settlements. Call (609) 240-0040 today and schedule a free consultation.
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