As drivers ourselves, the legal team and support staff at the law offices of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, fully understand the inherent dangers of traveling Maryland’s beltways, highways, interstates and city streets. And although fewer people may be injured or die as a result of a traffic accident in Baltimore, Gaithersburg, Rockville and the District, these events can and do happen quite frequently. Truly, how often have members of the motoring public driven slowly by the recent aftermath of a bad road accident and wondered if the people being attended to by paramedics and other emergency responders would be alright?
From a passerby’s point of view, many of the roadside emergencies that motorists encounter on a daily or weekly basis certainly can appear, on the surface, to be more of an inconvenience than a life tragedy unfolding, but even a simple flat tire or blown radiator hose can place some people in a life-and-death situation with regard to the traffic passing just a matter of feet from a disabled vehicle. Sedans, minivans and SUVs certainly pose their own risks as they pass by a disabled vehicle sitting on the shoulder of the beltway or interstate, but commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) such as car haulers, moving vans, tanker trucks and motor coaches can much more easily threaten the safety of individuals stranded on the roadside.
Thanks to prevalence of cellphones these days, help is often minutes away. However, the interval between becoming stranded on a busy interstate and the minutes before help does arrive can be nerve-wracking at best. And while many people might only worry about how soon they might get towing assistance for their disabled car, truck or SUV, the odds of having a more serious and life-threatening event occur in the meantime can be quite high.
Whether the individuals in potential danger are the driver and passengers of a broken-down vehicle, a Good Samaritan who stops to offer assistance, or a tow truck driver arriving to render assistance, each person shares similar risks when standing mere feet from fast-moving cars and large trucks. There are many accounts here in Maryland of individuals who died or were seriously hurt in a roadside traffic accident. It should come as no surprise that even running out of gas on a well-traveled roadway can easily develop into a life-threatening situation if another vehicle rear-ends or sideswipes the disabled vehicle or the individuals nearby.
At Lebowitz & Mzhen, we understand that the opportunity for tragedy on our state’s roadways can be very high indeed. Whether the initial event is something as basic as a blown tire or over-heated engine, these seemingly inconvenient problems can expose some people to unnecessary danger when they occur on busy, highly trafficked roadways. As preventable as roadside collisions may be, these types of traffic wrecks will likely continue to be a threat to many individuals as time goes on.
For those unlucky victims whose lives can be changed in an instant due to a roadside wreck, the difference between life and death can often be a factor of impact speed. Drivers of passenger cars and commercial trucks approaching a disabled vehicle on the shoulder of the beltway or interstate can find themselves caught off guard at higher speeds, especially if the view of the stopped car or pedestrians on the shoulder is blocked by the vehicles ahead. Because of this, safety advocates typically advise that vehicles in the travel lanes move out of the lane nearest the shoulder to avoid a potential crash.
Not surprisingly, the damage and personal injury potential rises sharply when a large CMV is the cause of a roadside collision. As Baltimore personal injury attorneys assisting victims of commercial trucking accidents, Lebowitz & Mzhen know that it is the people who are standing next to or near a disabled vehicle who often suffer the most in a roadside crash. In fact, emergency responders -- such as fire fighters, EMS personnel and police officers -- can be the most frequent victims of beltway and interstate shoulder accidents.
As professional trial lawyers working in the area of auto and trucking injury law, we study the facts of every client’s case to determine the negligent parties. A commercial trucker who does not keep a careful eye open for possible trouble on the road ahead can end up killing or injuring a pedestrian due to basic negligence. As motorists ourselves, we are well aware of the constant dangers that moving traffic often poses to everyone on or near busy Maryland roadways -- this includes drivers, passengers, bicycle riders and people on foot; The best thing to do is keep a wary eye on the road and ignore any distractions that could lead to a traffic accident -- doing so may save a life.
If a crash does occur, our Maryland personal injury experts are ready to assist victims of negligence-related beltway accidents and interstate wrecks. Our task is to determine who the responsible parties are and to pursue an injury or wrongful death claim for our clients. In the majority of roadside-related pedestrian accidents, the responsible party is often the negligent driver that strayed from a travel lane and struck the victim on the shoulder. Instances where a commercial vehicle is involved, responsibility may be shared between the trucker and other negligent parties, such as the manufacturer of a defective product that contributed to the crash via a mechanical failure -- such as faulty brakes or a malfunctioning steering component.
As experienced legal professionals, our staff has the training and proficiency to ensure that current, past and future medical expenses will be included in the victim’s injury claim. At Lebowitz & Mzhen we are always ready and willing to offer our expertise to help victims of auto and trucking-related roadside accidents. We understand the law and how to apply it. Please contact us today so we may set up a free, no-obligation consultation. We will review your personal injury case and explain your rights to compensation under Maryland law. You may email either Jack Lebowitz or Vadim Mzhen, or phone us at our toll-free number -- (800) 654-1949 -- to arrange for a meeting to discuss your case.