When residents of Newark, New Jersey, hear about drunk driving accidents, they assume that it involved collisions between motor-vehicles. But besides this, alcohol-related accidents can also occur if a drunk driver strikes a pedestrian who is either using a crosswalk or walking on the sidewalk.

Take, for example, the fatal pedestrian accident that ended the life of a mother in New Jersey. According to sources, the 28-year-old woman was walking home from work along Railroad Avenue in East Rutherford when a car struck her. The accident happened on August 22 of last year, leaving the victim with severe head injuries. She was taken to Hackensack University Medical Center and died two days later.

An accident investigation determined that the driver of the car that fatally struck the pedestrian was under the influence at the time of the accident. The authorities stated that a 23-year-old man driving a 2006 Lexus GS430 lost control of the vehicle. The alleged drunk driver reportedly hit a curb, lost control and entered the north side of the road toward the sidewalk. Police noted that he struck a wooden utility pole and street light first before hitting the pedestrian accident victim. The driver faces several criminal charges in connection to the fatal crash.

Recently, a grand jury indicted the alleged drunk driver on vehicular homicide charges and aggravated manslaughter for the August 2013 pedestrian accident. The suspect was also charged with death by auto for reckless driving while intoxicated in the first and second degree.

While a fatal pedestrian accident in New Jersey may result in criminal charges to the suspected drunk driver, the incident is a tragedy for the victim’s family. In such a case, the charges brought against the negligent driver may not make up for the financial and emotional losses of the family, especially if the victim supported the household. Fortunately, a wrongful death lawsuit allows the family to seek compensation that can help relieve them from those challenges.

Source: North Jersey, “Rutherford man indicted on vehicular homicide charge in death of Carlstadt woman,” Peter J. Sampson, April 29, 2014