If you or a loved one have sustained injuries in a vehicle-pedestrian accident in New Jersey, chances are that a larger SUV, van or pickup truck was involved. A study released in March by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)indicates that larger vehicles are more likely to hit pedestrians when making left and right turns.
Vehicle design may be at fault
The IIHS study indicated that the design of larger vehicles could be a factor in pedestrian injuries as the size, shape or location of A-pillar supporting vehicle roofs could make it harder for drivers to see pedestrians while turning. While statistics vary between right and left turns, all types of larger vehicles, whether SUVs, light pickup trucks or minivans, were more likely to be involved in pedestrian accidents.
Increasing sales of larger also appear to add to the problem. In 2009, pickups, SUVs and minivans comprised 47% of all new vehicles sold. By 2021, light pickup trucks accounted for 75% of all new vehicles sold.
Although heavier vehicles tend to protect occupants in accidents better, the opposite happens when pedestrians are involved. The IIHS notes that heavier vehicles tend to produce more severe pedestrian injuries.
Larger vehicles can affect injury claims
As the prevalence of larger vehicles increases on New Jersey roads, so does the severity of accidents involving pedestrians. Because larger vehicles tend to produce more severe and complex injuries that may result in more extended recovery periods or even death, injury lawsuit claims become even more critical.
Although many late-model vehicles contain pedestrian detection systems to help drivers avoid collisions, not all do. Additionally, these systems are not a substitute for driver attention. Negligence can still be a factor in all types of accidents.
Anyone who has been involved in a motor vehicle accident due to the negligence of others may be able to seek compensation. If you have evidence that the size of the vehicle involved contributed to the severity of your injuries, you may be entitled to a larger settlement because of the extra time needed to achieve a full recovery.