Representing individuals hurt or injured in automobile accidents, I and my colleagues are more than mildly aware of the potentially deadly results of car, truck and motorcycle wrecks. While injuries received in most traffic accidents may not result in serious medical complications or long-term disability, the possibility still exists. Of course, we also help the families of victims who have been killed in fatal roadway collision.
Whether through extreme negligence or even a lack of proper caution on the part of another person, the injuries sustained by a driver or passenger of a car, SUV, minivan, or vehicle used for public transportation, can be extensive. From cuts and bruises to compound fractures, internal injuries or closed-head trauma, a number of bodily injuries can continue to dog a person weeks or months — sometimes even years — down the road.
Some victims never leave the hospital after being hurt in an automobile or commercial trucking accident. These hapless, innocent victims linger for day, weeks or even months and years before they sadly cannot cope with the medical complications of their injuries. In such instances, the person’s bodily functions begin to ebb regardless of how much treatment is performed on the victim. In the end, the family must cope with the loss of a loved one, who may have continued to suffer in pain and discomfort all during their failed recovery.
We were reminded of such a typical scenario when we read of a young woman who lost her battle for life earlier this year. According to news reports, 39-year-old Laurie Smith was severely injured in a pedestrian-car accident in Catonsville, MD, on December 23, 2011. At that time, the driver of a Honda minivan going westbound on Rolling Rd. tried to make a left onto Baltimore National Pike, but somehow lost control of the vehicle and left the roadway. Jumping a nearby curb, the vehicle hit Ms. Smith, pinning her against an adjacent wall.
Following the crash, Smith was transported to University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center where she remained until late March when she passed away. Based on news reports at the time of her death, Police had yet to lodge any criminal charges against the driver of the minivan, although officials did state that the driver was at fault for causing the ultimately fatal collision. Police had also stated that drugs or alcohol did not appear to be contributing factors in the fatal crash.
While police stated that the Elkridge resident had not been charged for the woman’s death, an
investigation was reportedly continuing; an autopsy on the victim’s body was scheduled, according to news articles, which could have a bearing on the overall results of the police investigation. Meanwhile, at the time of the news reports, there had been no mention as to whether the driver’s loss of control had been exacerbated by a mechanical failure, such as a broken steering component on the 2011 Honda Odyssey.
As Maryland personal injury attorneys, we understand the factors that can cause a collision such as this particular pedestrian crash. Knowing how and why an accident may have occurred can be an asset to determining fault or responsibility following a fatal car crash. Every case is different and the best way to learn about your specific circumstances is to contact a qualified personal injury lawyer for a consultation.
Elkridge Man Not Charged in Pedestrian’s Death, Patch.com, March 26, 2012
Woman dies months after car pinned her to wall, ABC2News.com, March 25, 2012