No-passing zones help save lives, and drivers face serious consequences for passing in these areas. Unfortunately, some of these negligent drivers cause serious injuries and fatalities to innocent New Jersey residents – and criminal consequences for drivers may seem bittersweet for those suffering in hospital beds. While seeing the negligent driver behind bars may help you achieve a sense of justice and closure, it cannot help you pay for medical expenses, missed wages, emotional distress, and other damages. To address these concerns, you might be considering an injury claim against the driver who attempted to pass in a no-passing zone. Can this legal course of action help you pursue the compensation you need after a no-passing zone crash in New Jersey?

Two Fatalities and Two Critical Injuries After New Jersey No-Passing Zone Crash

Suing After a No-Passing Zone Crash in New Jersey

On February 12, 2024, it was reported that a crash in a no-passing zone had led to two fatalities and two serious injuries. The accident occurred in Hopewell Township at around 11 PM on State Highway 31, and police arrived at the scene to find the wreckage of a Jeep Grand Cherokee and a Nissan Maxima. While the driver of the Jeep was treated for minor injuries and quickly released from hospital, the others were not so lucky. 

Two passengers inside the Jeep suffered critical injuries, although their conditions reportedly stabilized after reaching a nearby hospital. A third passenger – a 13-year-old child – did not survive the crash. In addition, the driver and sole occupant of the Nissan died in the collision and was quickly pronounced dead by first responders at the scene. 

The driver of the Jeep is now facing various criminal charges, including two counts of vehicular manslaughter. These charges stem from the fact that he attempted to illegally pass two vehicles in a no-passing zone. This reckless maneuver brought him into oncoming traffic – and into the path of the Nissan. Although the crash remains under investigation, the root cause seems quite obvious. 

Is Passing in a No-Passing Zone a Form of Negligence?

Passing in a no-passing zone is a clear sign of negligence in New Jersey. These rules are put in place to save lives, and they prevent vehicles from getting into head-on collisions. Passing in these areas brings drivers directly into the path of oncoming traffic, and the potential for dangerous collisions becomes quite high. Proving negligence should be quite straightforward if you have been on the receiving end of this type of accident. 

Can I Sue?

Unfortunately, the potential for catastrophic or fatal injuries is quite high after a head-on collision of this nature. As a result, victims can potentially file lawsuits directly against negligent drivers instead of going through the no-fault system in New Jersey. The Garden State follows this no-fault system unless victims suffer “serious injuries.” If this serious injury threshold is met, victims can step outside the boundaries of the no-fault system and hold drivers directly accountable with personal injury lawsuits. 

This may be the most appropriate course of action in many situations. With a personal injury lawsuit, you can pursue non-economic damages such as emotional distress, pain and suffering, disfigurement, PTSD, loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, depression, anxiety, and so on. These emotional and psychological losses may increase total compensation by a significant margin. 

In contrast, a no-fault injury claim can only provide compensation for economic damages such as lost wages or medical expenses. In addition, it typically only covers a portion of total missed wages instead of the full amount. While this may be concerning to various plaintiffs, sometimes it is genuinely the only available path to compensation. For example, the other driver may have been uninsured – or they may lack the assets to cover your damages after being sued directly. 

Find an Experienced Auto Accident Lawyer in New Jersey

If you have been searching for a qualified auto accident lawyer in New Jersey, look no further than Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. With our assistance, you can strive for positive results after a crash in a no-passing zone. The laws are clear – and drivers should face serious consequences for attempting these unsafe maneuvers. More importantly, this represents a clear sign of serious negligence and can therefore form the basis of an injury claim. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may have the option to sue. For more specific guidance based on your unique circumstances, be sure to book a consultation at your earliest convenience. 

The firm’s principals, Gabriel R. Lependorf and David E. Silverstein, have each been representing injured victims in the State of New Jersey for over thirty years.

Call Our Office At (609) 240-0040 Today for Help