When you hear about car accidents, bicycle accidents, taxi accidents or more on the streets of New York City, you likely do not think twice about the use of the term “accident” to describe the situation. However, by its very nature, the word “accident” implies that no fault or potential criminal element is to be found with any party. Sometimes an accident truly is just that—an accident—unavoidable and without clear fault on the part of anyone involved. Yet many other times, an accident has definite responsibilty that can—and should—be identified.
New York’s newly renamed Collision Investigation Squad, previously known as the Accident Investigation Squad is increasing efforts to reduce an increasing trend of deaths as a result of motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians or bicyclists. The responsibility of car drivers to help provide safe passage for those on foot or bikes is taking center stage in the city.
As part of the name change, the team will have new expectations as to when and how promptly they begin investigations into collisions. The goal of the changes on the part of New York City police staff is to more efficiently and effectively identify and capture suspects in vehicle accidents, especially for those involving injury or death.
Walking or bicycling the streets of New York City can be a great way to get around but it is not without its hazards. Knowing our rights and being prepared before an accident is always helpful. If you or someone you know do happen to be a pedestrian or bicyclist involved in an accident with a car, it can be a good idea to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney.
Source: The Car Connection, “’Accident’ or ‘collision’: Why don’t drivers get jailed for killing pedestrians?” Richard Read, June 27, 2013