Advice for Well-intentioned Maryland Pedestrians: Traffic Accidents can be Equal-opportunity Killers

As a Maryland automobile accident lawyer and motorist myself, I see examples daily of people exposing themselves to unnecessary personal injury — and sometimes death — from traffic-related accidents. The summer especially is a time of increased car-pedestrian accidents. In fact, just the other day while driving down a well-traveled four-lane street, I noted a homeowner pulling weeds from around a light pole just inches away from the curb. With her back to oncoming traffic, this person was apparently unaware of or unconcerned with the cars and trucks passing barely three feet away at 35 miles per hour, sometimes faster.

This incident reminded me of a recent news story about a man, a Good Samaritan of sorts, who was critically injured while observing another unrelated vehicle collision. Having represented people injured by a motor vehicle while on foot, I see this kind of scenario many times over in the courtroom. According to reports, a 44-year-old Clinton, MD, man was hit by a car earlier this summer on Route 32 near I-95 in Howard County.

Police reports showed that Franklin Trowell Jr. was on the eastbound shoulder of the road checking a vehicle accident that had just occurred at around four o’clock in the morning. Perhaps the victim should have exercised more caution, due to the darkness at that hour, however he apparently was more concerned about the other people involved in the earlier accident.

Suddenly without warning, Trowell was struck by a 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier driven by a Laurel man. According to police, 55-year-old Leonard Supsic lost control of the Cavalier, which left the roadway and hit Trowell.

When police and emergency personnel arrived they treated the man and transported him to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, where he was listed in critical condition. The human body is no match against a 2,500-pound vehicle and these kinds of car-pedestrian accidents can result in personal injuries ranging from minor cuts and bruises to much more serious bone fractures, damaged internal organs, internal bleeding, as well as traumatic spinal and brain injuries.

To casually ignore the potential for injury or death at the hands of another motorist is hardly a responsible way to go about one’s everyday life. While feeling justified that others must watch out for you, being in the right might feel good initially, but once a traffic accident has occurred, being “dead right” is not the way most people would prefer to be remembered by their friends and family.

Clinton man in critical condition after being hit by car,, May 29, 2009

Contact Information