Personal Injury Articles for the Injured of NJ

Can Pokemon Go be Made Safer for the Road?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Jul 31, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Since its debut a little over a year ago, Pokemon Go has captured the interest of a huge and surprisingly diverse player base. The ability to encounter and capture animated creatures "in the wild" as you walk around your neighborhood appeals to more than just the children that the colorful characters seem designed for. Many adults who have enjoyed the franchise since its beginning 21 years ago have seized on this new iteration of their favorite game series, while newcomers to the Pokemon world have quickly found themselves drawn into the excitement of "catching them all." As a smartphone app, the game is even more easily able to reach a wide range of potential players, since mobile devices are rarely far from the hands of most Americans.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Distracted Driving, Pedestrian Accidents

Keeping Joggers, Walkers, Pedestrians Safe

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Jan 04, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Winter is beginning in earnest, and reactions to the onslaught of winter weather vary depending on who you ask. Children delight in fluffy snowdrifts and the possibility of school closures, while commuters dread the prospect of slippery roads. Die-hard joggers defy the cold weather for the sake of their morning runs, and some cautious would-be motorists would prefer to walk short distances rather than risk driving in winter conditions. However, for these latter groups, winter holds particular risks for pedestrian auto accidents. It’s easy for joggers and other pedestrians to forget the ways in which this time of year increases the danger of motor vehicle accidents, and some motorists forget that anyone might be walking or jogging in the cold to begin with. For both groups, a reminder of the ways that winter increases the risk of pedestrian traffic accidents might be useful.

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Topics: Injuries, Dangerous Condition, Distracted Driving, Pedestrian Accidents

Pedestrian Safety

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Dec 30, 2016

By Francis M. Smith

Winter weather can be beautiful, but that beauty conceals many hazards for anyone who has to brave the cold and go outside – that is, almost everyone. Slippery roads can quickly spell disaster for drivers, but the danger of wintry conditions to pedestrians should not be overlooked. This is true not only for habitual walkers and joggers, but also for anyone walking between their front door and their car, or crossing a business parking lot. It’s important for everyone to keep pedestrian safety measures in mind any time they leave the house at this time of year.

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Topics: Dangerous Condition, Distracted Driving, Pedestrian Accidents

NHTSA: Back to School Safety Month. Walk, Bike, and Ride to School Safely!

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Sep 02, 2016

By Francis M. Smith

The new school year is fast approaching (undoubtedly much faster than most school-aged children would prefer), and with it comes the rush of back-to-school preparations. But in the scramble to buy notebooks, #2 pencils, and the perfect pair of sneakers, it's worth taking a moment to consider your child's route to school and back again every weekday. Kids travel between home and school in a variety of ways: some are driven by parents, while others take the school bus, walk, or ride a bike. There are benefits to each of these, depending on a family's situation, but each method comes with its own hazards as well. Considering these possible dangers carefully can help you plan the safest commute possible for your child.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Injuries to Children, Bicycle Accidents, Pedestrian Accidents, Bicycle Safety

Pedestrian Accidents Involving Children

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Mar 30, 2016

By Francis M. Smith

While children are particularly vulnerable to serious injury in car crashes, the danger of deadly accidents involving motor vehicles and children doesn't end when the child gets out of the automobile. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates, nearly 1 in every 5 traffic deaths of children under the age of 16 occur while the child is a pedestrian. Though parents strive to protect their children by insisting that younger kids hold an adult's hand when crossing the street and teaching older children the importance of looking both ways to notice oncoming cars, it only takes a moment for a child to do something unexpected, and too often the result is tragedy.

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Topics: Injuries to Children, Pedestrian Accidents

Another Harsh Winter Anticipated

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Dec 18, 2015

  By Francis M. Smith

As winter closes in on New Jersey again, many residents have begun to wonder whether another season of unusual and severe weather awaits us. Long-range forecasts are difficult to make with any certainty, but the old stand-by reference for many people across the country, the Old Farmer's Almanac, has weighed in definitively on the subject. According to the almanac, the winter of 2015-2016 promises to be another severe one, with particularly harsh temperature drops and plenty of snow. In particular, our part of the country is destined for some noteworthy cold snaps this year, according to the publication.

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Slip and Fall, Pedestrian Accidents

Children Twice as Likely to Be Hit by Cars on Halloween

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Oct 30, 2015

By Francis M. Smith

Halloween is one of the most fun and exciting nights of the year, for adults and children alike. Unfortunately, it's also one of the most dangerous – especially for children. Though many of the horrors of Halloween are merely pretend, some risks are all too real, including the danger of being hit by a car. Over the years, multiple health and safety organizations have investigated accident statistics and reached a single conclusion: a child is substantially more likely to be fatally struck by a vehicle on Halloween night than on any other day of the year.

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Injuries to Children, Pedestrian Accidents

Arrange Rides Home from Halloween Festivities Before Parties Start

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Oct 28, 2015

 By Francis M. Smith

Many people have fond childhood memories of dressing up in costume and going trick-or-treating around their neighborhood on Halloween, but the fun doesn't stop after you pass the age when it's acceptable to knock on strangers' doors and beg for candy. Every year, countless adults participate in Halloween revelry, giving out candy or attending costume parties. Many of these celebrations feature alcoholic beverages, which means it's important to plan ahead when you intend to go to one of these events – beyond what costume to wear. Unless you're hosting your own party or spending the night at the party location, you'll need a safe way to get home after the festivities are over. If you drink, that way home should not involve getting behind the wheel.

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Drunk Driving, Pedestrian Accidents

Kids are at Risk for Accidents

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Jun 17, 2015

By Francis M. Smith

For parents, the idea of their child being hurt or killed in an accident is the ultimate nightmare. Tragically, sometimes that nightmare comes true. Knowing about the risks and how to reduce them can give parents a greater ability to protect their children, and may provide answers and understanding when an accident happens despite the parents' best efforts. If disaster does strike through the fault of another, the advice and guidance of an experienced and compassionate child injury lawyer is an essential asset in helping the family find answers and recover stability in the aftermath of an accident.

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Topics: Injuries, Car Accidents, Dog Bites, Injuries to Children, Bicycle Accidents, Pedestrian Accidents

What is Title 59 in NJ?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Jan 05, 2015

By Francis M. Smith

If you have suffered an injury because of the negligent actions of another person or an organization, it can be reassuring to know that the state of New Jersey provides a means of seeking compensation through the courts for those injuries and the expenses arising from them, if the party responsible for your accident refuses to offer a reasonable settlement. But what happens when the state of New Jersey, or one of its counties or municipalities, is the party responsible for your injuries? Then things become a little more complicated.

The state of New Jersey has established in law a degree of immunity from liability for itself and its employees; this is generally referred to as "sovereign immunity" - because it's carried over from the English common law which was mostly adopted here in the U.S. early in our history. Back then in England, you could not sue the King. (That is, the "sovereign" was immune from suit.)

Here in New Jersey, governmental immunity from suit is the prevailing law, but there are exceptions to this immunity, under which injured or wronged citizens are able to sue the state and its actors for damages. Even then, though, their lawsuits are subject to many limitations and requirements. These are outlined in the New Jersey Tort Claims Act (“TCA”), otherwise known as Title 59. This legislation, and the court decisions interpreting it, imposes restrictions on the circumstances under which you can sue the state (or any governmental subdivision) and its employees, the kinds of damages you can seek compensation for, and the manner in which you must file your suit.

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Topics: Dangerous Condition, Dangerous Premises, Pedestrian Accidents

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