Pedestrians generally have the right of way in New Jersey, but not always. When a car crash leaves a pedestrian dead, there will be a lot of questions about what happened.
Did the pedestrian dart out into traffic unannounced? Should the driver have been more aware and attentive to avoid hitting the pedestrian? Police, lawyers, prosecutors, judges and insurance companies will need to get answers to these questions and more to determine who is at fault and liable for the accident.
Recent New Jersey pedestrian crash raises questions
In a recent pedestrian crash near Jefferson, two pedestrians died as they were trying to cross Route 23. A 48-year-old man driving a pickup truck struck both pedestrians. Then another 48-year-old man driving a pickup truck struck the pedestrians a second time.
Police suspect that the first impact threw the pedestrians into the path of the second pickup. Authorities pronounced both pedestrians dead at the accident scene.
As police tried to determine what happened in the collision, traffic on Route 23 was backed up for miles.
Getting the details straight after a pedestrian crash is vital
Motor vehicle drivers will often be liable for personal injury and property damages after they strike and injure a pedestrian. If the accident results in death, then close family members may be able to pursue wrongful death claims relating to their loved one's loss.
However, the success of a legal claim following a pedestrian crash will depend on the facts and circumstances surrounding the crash.
Often, personal injury lawyers can use car accident reconstruction experts to help in determining what happened. These experts use data from police reports, accident scene analysis, photographs, details relating to injuries, eyewitness accounts, property damage on vehicles, surveillance camera footage, interviews and more to reconstruct what happened -- sometimes building animations to illustrate the events. Often, analyses like this will reveal facts and information that police did not take into account in their initial evaluations of a crash.
Learn as much as you can about your pedestrian crash
Were you or a family member hurt in a pedestrian-related car accident? The more you find out about the events leading up to the crash, the better chances you will have of determining what happened.