The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that nearly 600 car accident fatalities occur every year in New Jersey. Many of these fatalities result from driving under the influence, drowsy driving, and distracted driving. Distracted driving can mean anything from talking on a cell phone to texting or simply not paying attention. Cell phone usage has made the problem worse in New Jersey. In addition to this high number of fatalities, NJ sees more than 250,000 accidents per year, according to the NJ Department of Transportation.
Is driver negligence the only cause of car accidents in the state? Driver negligence is only one category of causes for accidents and fatalities. According to data from NHTSA, the following are typically to blame for dangerous automobile crashes:
- Driver negligence: this category includes drowsy driving, driving under the influence, and distracted driving. This category accounts for any accident resulting from an act or omission of a driver.
- Automobile defects: this category includes defective parts, such as seat belts or tires, as well as a defective design. In these cases, accident victims may be able to file a product liability claim.
- Third-party liability: this category refers to accidents in which neither a driver nor a defective aspect of the vehicle led to the car crash. In general, these claims might be the result of a hazardous road condition caused by construction or poor road design. In these cases, an injured person may be able to file a claim against the municipality responsible and you should always speak to an experienced New Jersey injury lawyer to discuss your case.