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Pedestrian in crosswalk became 2nd Newport fatality in a week

Karns & Kerrison

Pedestrians stay out of the roadways as often as possible in order to avoid being struck by a vehicle. In an urban setting, however, it is inevitable that someone walking will need to cross a street. Even when an individual remains in the crosswalk, the possibility of being run down by a vehicle exists.

On Jan. 23, a pickup truck struck a woman crossing Bellevue Avenue in Newport. The 59-year-old was reportedly in a crosswalk in front of the International Tennis Hall of Fame when the 64-year-old driver of a pickup truck hit her. The driver claims not to have seen the woman, and the police gave him a citation for failing to yield to a pedestrian. The victim was taken to Rhode Island Hospital. Despite the medical staff's attempts to save the woman, she died within hours of the accident.

On Jan. 22, a 56-year-old man in a wheelchair died after being hit by a vehicle the week prior. He, too, was in a Newport crosswalk at the time of the accident. No further details regarding this man's death were reported.

Drivers need to pay particular attention anytime they are near a crosswalk and always assume someone is crossing the street. If a driver is distracted or otherwise not giving the road his or her full attention, a pedestrian can suffer the same fate as these two victims. As each surviving families grieves, it may be of little solace to them that they retain the right to file wrongful death claims against the drivers deemed responsible for their deaths. However, as time progresses and the financial impact of their losses are felt, it may help to seek some financial recovery. To prevail, they will need to prove in a Rhode Island civil court that the driver that caused the death of their loved one was negligent in a manner that proximately caused the accident and death that resulted.

Source: 630wpro.com, NEWS: Woman hit by pickup in Newport crosswalk dies, No author, Jan. 24, 2014

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