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DELAWARE INJURY LAWYERS

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Category Archives: Wrongful Death


pedestrian

Fatal Pedestrian Accident Occurs in New Castle on Pulaski Highway

Fatal Pedestrian Accident Occurs in New Castle on Pulaski HighwayA fatal pedestrian accident occurred in New Castle, Delaware on Thursday morning. While attempting to cross Pulaski Highway near Wilton Boulevard, the pedestrian was fatally struck by a vehicle around 5:35 am. The victim succumbed to fatal injuries at the scene of the fatal pedestrian accident.

In Delaware, fatal pedestrian accidents have been increasing with alarming frequency. Due to population growth in formerly rural areas, congestion on local roads and state highways appears more often and may lead to traffic accidents that result in a variety of personal injuries as well as potential fatalities for victims. Unfortunately, motorists may be unaware of the presence of pedestrians or may fail to use caution when driving in their vicinity.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a pedestrian accident, contact our New Castle personal injury lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call 302-407-0827 or contact us online to see how we can assist you. With offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Hockessin, Newark, Glasgow, Middletown, Smyrna, Dover, Lewes, Georgetown, and Seaford as well as those in the communities of New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.

customer fatally injured

2017 Crash Fatalities

Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow report on 2017 crash deathsFor the second year in a row, the number of car crash fatalities reached over 40,000. According to National Safety Council (NSC) estimates, there were 40,100 U.S. automotive fatalities in 2017. This number is down from 2016 in which there were 40,327 deaths, a one percent decrease. However, the 2017 estimate is six percent higher than the number of deaths from car wrecks in 2015.

The official numbers will be released later this year by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). If the estimates hold up, it will be the steepest two-year increase in more than 50 years. The NSC estimates the cost of motor vehicle deaths, personal injury and property damage at $413.8 billion in 2017.

Crash Deaths in Delaware

In 2015, there were 130 crash deaths in Delaware, compared to 119 in 2016 and 119 in 2017. From 2015 to 2017, there was therefore an eight percent decrease. Although this shows improvement, the NSC President and CEO says that there is a lot left to be accomplished in terms of improving roadway safety and decreasing the number of car wrecks.

Efforts to Improve Road Safety

Many policymakers agree that these crash deaths constitute a public health crisis that must be addressed. The NSC and the NHTSA both work to decrease the number of crashes and resulting injuries and deaths. The NSC spokeswoman says that, according to the estimates, they are not making the progress they had hoped for.

Safety advocates push for the implementation of high-tech safety improvements such as collision avoidance systems and self-driving vehicles. However, the American Automobile Association (AAA) Foundation for Traffic Safety reports that in-vehicle technology may be hurting more than helping, as drivers take their eyes off the road for dangerous periods of time when trying to use voice-based and touch screen features.

The AAA research reveals that when programming navigation, drivers took their eyes off the road for an average of 40 seconds and most vehicle infotainment systems put high or very high levels of demand on drivers. This contributes to the 3,400 deaths and 391,000 personal injuries due to distracted driving each year, according to the NHTSA.

Wrongful Death in Delaware

When someone is injured in a car wreck caused by someone else’s negligence, they may file a personal injury claim to recover damages for the monetary damages associated with their injuries. If that person dies, the personal representative of their estate may file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the deceased person’s beneficiaries. Family members may be able to recover damages for funeral and burial expenses, lost wages and benefits, loss of spousal or child support, loss of household services and mental anguish. In Delaware, a wrongful death claim must be filed within two years of the date of the deceased person’s death according to the state statute of limitations.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Survivors Pursue Wrongful Death Claims

If your loved one was fatally injured in a wreck due to someone else’s carelessness, you may be entitled to compensation for their preventable death. Contact an experienced Wilmington car accident lawyer at Rhoades & Morrow. We represent clients across Delaware, downstate Delaware, Milford, Wilmington, Bear and New Castle. For a free consultation, contact us online or call us at 302-427-9500.

head on collision

Fatal Vehicle Collision Occurs in Brandywine Hundred

Fatal Vehicle Collision Occurs in Brandywine HundredEarly on Friday morning, a fatal vehicle collision occurred in Brandywine Hundred, Delaware. Around 1 am, two vehicles collided on Silverside Road, which caused a fatality. Two other vehicle occupants sustained personal injuries during the fatal vehicle collision.

Diminished visibility may cause a serious car accident to occur late at night. Additionally, factors like drowsy driving, speeding, and intoxicated driving contribute to the possibility of crashes that may cause a variety of injuries as well as potential fatalities for victims. Oftentimes, head-on collisions may result in catastrophic injuries for car occupants.

If you or your loved ones have been seriously injured in a car accident, contact our New Castle car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call 302-407-0827 or contact us online to see how we can assist you. With offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Hockessin, Newark, Glasgow, Middletown, Smyrna, Dover, Lewes, Georgetown, and Seaford as well as those in the communities of New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.

forklift

Worker Fatally Injured After Front End Loader Drove Off Claymont Pier

Worker Fatally Injured After Front End Loader Drove Off Claymont Pier

A worker sustained fatal injuries after the front end loader he was operating drove off a pier in Claymont, Delaware. The incident occurred on Thursday morning around 10 am when the 62-year-old worker from a distribution company drove off the pier. Emergency responders recovered the man from the water, but unfortunately, he could not be revived. The Delaware State Police are investigating the accident where the worker was fatally injured.

In some industries, workplace accidents are a common occurrence due to the hazardous nature of the business and tasks involved in operating it. Although many workers realize the danger associated with some jobs that does not eliminate the possibility of a tragic accident occurring that may leave the employee fatally injured or with serious injuries. If the work environment contained safety hazards or the business failed to maintain and upgrade equipment to protect their employees from injuries, the company may be liable.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a workplace accident, contact our Wilmington construction accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call 302-427-9500 or contact us online to see how we can assist you. With offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Hockessin, Newark, Glasgow, Middletown, Smyrna, Dover, Lewes, Georgetown, and Seaford as well as those in the communities of New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.

marijuana legalization

Effects of Marijuana Legalization

Delaware Car Accident Lawyers discuss how the legalization of marijuana could impact driver safety. Marijuana use has increased significantly over the past 15 years. Since 2012, many states have decriminalized or legalized the use and sale of marijuana. As more are poised to follow suit, opponents, including motor safety advocates and law enforcement officials, express concern about the effects of marijuana legalization on driving safety.

The Debate Over the Effects of Marijuana Legalization on Driver Safety

A recent American Automobile Association (AAA) Foundation for Traffic Safety study focused on Washington, one of the first two states to legalize marijuana in 2012. It is cited as an example of marijuana legalization’s effects on road safety. According to the study, cannabis use impairs driving-related capacities including psychomotor functions, cognition, attention, vigilance, tracking, reaction time and coordination. The study further revealed that fatal wrecks involving drivers who were under the influence of marijuana increased in Washington after marijuana was legalized.

However, proponents of marijuana legalization point to data from a recent case-control study showing that there was no significant association between marijuana use and collision risk. They emphasize that the data shows no difference between traffic fatality rates in Washington and other states that have not legalized marijuana. Also, according to the AAA study, drivers who use marijuana tend to drive slower, keep more distance and pass other cars less than those under the influence of alcohol. They may also be able to more accurately estimate their own impairment and therefore temporarily compensate for some of their diminished skills in comparison to those who drink and drive.

Penalties for Driving under the Influence of Marijuana

Penalties for marijuana DUIs vary by state. Some common criminal penalties include jail time, fines, community service, ignition interlock and license suspension. Those who drive under the influence of alcohol or marijuana and cause the death of another person may also be subject to civil penalties from a wrongful death suit.

In Delaware, a wrongful death claim may be brought by the victim’s spouse, parent, child and siblings. The victim’s family members may be awarded damages if the defendant is found to have caused the death of the victim through his or her wrongful action, such as driving under the influence of marijuana. Judges will consider several factors when determining the amount of damages to award, including lost wages and benefits, loss of parental, marital and household services, the reasonable cost of providing for the care of minor children, reasonable funeral and burial expenses and mental anguish.

Delaware Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Pursue Compensation for Victims of Drugged Driving Accidents

If you were injured or lost a loved one in a car accident caused by someone who was under the influence, contact a Delaware car accident lawyer at Rhoades & Morrow. Our dedicated attorneys seek to hold responsible parties accountable for their negligent conduct and can help you recover the compensation you deserve. For over two decades, Rhoades & Morrow has successfully represented clients in car accident, personal injury, or wrongful death claims throughout Delaware, including those in Wilmington, Bear and Milford. Contact us online or call us at 302-427-9500 to schedule a free consultation.

head on collision

Heavy Rain Contributed to Fatal Bridgeville Motor Vehicle Crash

Heavy Rain Contributed to Fatal Bridgeville Motor Vehicle CrashPolice believe heavy rain contributed to a fatal wreck in Bridgeville, Delaware. The accident occurred on Sunday afternoon around 3:14 pm on Redden Road when an 82-year-old man drove his pickup truck nearly head-on into a minivan driven by a 66-year-old man from Georgetown, Delaware. The pickup driver was brought to the Nanticoke Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his fatal injuries while the minivan driver and his 12-year-old passenger sustained minor injuries. A nine-year-old child from the minivan escaped the crash unscathed.

Unpredictable and inclement weather may create hazardous conditions on roadways that can increase the likelihood of accidents. Slippery roads put drivers and their passengers in danger. They may also instigate chain reaction crashes, which may multiply the amount of injuries to catastrophic proportions. As such, drivers who encounter hazardous weather conditions must adjust their driving accordingly by slowing down and increasing the space between their car and the vehicle they are following.

If you or your loved ones have been seriously injured in an auto accident, contact our Georgetown car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call 302-427-9500 or contact us online to see how we can assist you. With offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Hockessin, Newark, Glasgow, Middletown, Smyrna, Dover, Lewes, Georgetown, and Seaford as well as those in the communities of New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.

Wrongful Death

Pursuing a Wrongful Death Claim

Delaware Wrongful Death Lawyers provide detailed advice for pursuing a wrongful death claim. The premise of a wrongful death claim is that the negligence or reckless acts of one party caused the untimely and preventable passing of another party. A wrongful death claim is similar to a personal injury claim, except that it is filed by the victim’s dependents, rather than by the victim. Surviving family members can file a wrongful death claim against the responsible party in effort to recover financial losses incurred due to their loved one’s passing.

Delaware State Law

Delaware law grants the family of the deceased the right to pursue legal action against the negligent party responsible for the death. Potential claimants in a wrongful death action include the deceased’s spouse, parents, children, or siblings. Plaintiffs may pursue compensation for injury-related expenses, including medical expenses; benefits and wages the victim would have received had he or she lived; loss of household and child care contributions; and burial and funeral costs. Non-economic damages may also be awarded and include compensation for pain and suffering. All damages will be awarded to the family of the deceased. A personal injury claim can turn into a wrongful death claim if the injured party passes away.

The Delaware state code addresses legal implications if the negligent party passes as well. Legal action can be pursued against a representative from the negligent party’s estate. A negligent party is not always a person. It can also be a “vessel,” such as a car. In these instances, the estate can pursue legal action against the vehicle’s manufacturer.

Circumstances That May Lead to a Wrongful Death Claim

Any situation that may give rise to a personal injury claim would classify as a wrongful death if the injured party dies from his or her injury. This includes any death resulting from:

It is the duty of the plaintiff to show that the other party was negligent because of an act or the failure to act appropriately.

Taking Legal Action

Delaware has a statute of limitations for wrongful death suits. In general, a claim must be filed within two years of the victim’s death. Wrongful death claims are civil cases. If criminal activity was involved, the state prosecutor is tasked with charging the negligent party. The negligent party can be involved in a civil and criminal case regarding the same incident.

Delaware Wrongful Death Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Advocate for Families Who Have Lost Loved Ones Due to Negligence

Since 1990, the dedicated attorneys at Rhoades & Morrow have been working for injured victims and their families throughout Delaware. We understand the pain experienced by those who have suffered the tragic loss of a family member because of someone else’s negligent or reckless actions. We work tirelessly to hold these parties accountable and secure justice for our clients. Schedule a free consultation with an experienced Delaware wrongful death lawyer today at our Wilmington office by calling 302-427-9500, or call our Bear office at 302-834-8484, or our Milford office at 302-422-6705. You can also contact us online.

motorcycle accidents

Motorcycle Rider Fatally Injured After SUV Collision in Red Lion

Motorcycle Rider Fatally Injured After SUV Collision in Red LionOn Monday afternoon, a motorcycle rider sustained fatal injuries after a collision with an SUV. Around 3:39 pm, the 35-year-old rider from Bear, Delaware was traveling on Route 71 in Red Lion, Delaware when he lost control of his bike, and struck the undercarriage and front left tire of an SUV. The 57-year-old woman who was driving the SUV escaped the wreck unscathed.

Due to the open nature of a motorcycle, riders are vulnerable in an accident with another vehicle. They may sustain a range of personal injuries and be in danger of succumbing to a fatality. Although riders under the age of 19 must wear a helmet when operating a motorcycle, riders above that age are not required to do so, which compounds the severity of a motorcycle crash if the rider is not wearing a helmet.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a motorcycle accident, contact our Bear motorcycle accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call 302-834-8484 or contact us online to see how we can assist you. With offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Hockessin, Newark, Glasgow, Middletown, Smyrna, Dover, Lewes, Georgetown, and Seaford as well as those in the communities of New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.

pedestrians

Pedestrian Exited DART Bus, Fatally Struck by Car

Pedestrian Exited DART Bus, Fatally Struck by CarAfter exiting a DART bus, a male pedestrian was fatally struck by a car in Wilmington, Delaware. The accident happened at approximately 11:30 pm in the Holly Oak neighborhood near the Brandywine Hundred Apartments when the man stepped off the DART bus he was riding and was instantly struck. The victim succumbed to his injuries at the scene of the accident, and an investigation is underway.

Although pedestrians are afforded the same rights under traffic laws, many motorists fail to use caution around them or are oblivious to their presence. Statistically speaking, Delaware ranks as the highest in the nation for pedestrian fatalities. As rural areas are becoming increasingly populated, this leads to heavier traffic and greater potential for pedestrian and motor vehicle accidents.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a pedestrian accident, contact the Wilmington pedestrian accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call 302-427-9500 or contact us online to see how we can assist you. With offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Hockessin, Newark, Glasgow, Middletown, Smyrna, Dover, Lewes, Georgetown, and Seaford as well as those in the communities of New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.

thanksgiving travel tips

Thanksgiving Travel Tips for Drivers

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers offer Thanksgiving travel tips to keep your loved ones safe. Surprisingly, the most dangerous holiday for drivers in the United States is not the Fourth of July or New Year’s Eve; occasions often associated with alcohol-filled celebrations. According to the National Safety Council, Thanksgiving weekend is associated with more fatal car accidents than any other holiday. On average, there have been 506 traffic fatalities every Thanksgiving weekend over the past 20 years. These accidents happen for many of the same reasons they do throughout the year; but the overall increase in cars on the road in the days surrounding Thanksgiving is the most significant factor. With more Americans visiting family and friends over the Thanksgiving holiday, the risk of car accidents increases. The good news is that with preparation and responsible driving, nearly all accidents can be avoided.

Maintain a Safe Vehicle

To ensure you and your passengers arrive to your destination safely, keep your car well-maintained. Check your fluids, windshield wipers, and tires before hitting the road. It is always smart to keep an emergency kit filled with blankets, flashlights, non-perishable food, and water in your vehicle.

Plan Ahead

Plan your itinerary ahead of time. Familiarize yourself with the highways, exits, and landmarks along your route so you do not have to make dangerous last-second turns. Check for any detours, road repairs, or weather conditions that may affect your trip and notify friends and family of your travel plans. There are several cell phone apps that allow loved ones to track your location in case of an emergency.

Stay Awake and Sober

Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving, and is one of the leading causes of fatal car accidents. Before you head out on a long road trip, include time in your schedule to rest and recharge. Designate shifts and share the driving with someone else when possible. Pull over to a safe location at the first sign of fatigue, whether it be yawning, daydreaming, slow reaction time, or heavy eyes. Driving while intoxicated is never acceptable. If you plan to enjoy cocktails during your Thanksgiving holiday, call a taxi, a friend, or spend the night where you are.

Avoid Distractions

In 2015, distracted driving took almost 3,500 lives. Distracted driving does not always mean texting or talking on the phone. Eating, drinking, smoking, and adjusting the radio can take a driver’s eyes off the road long enough to cause an accident. Any non-driving activity is a distraction and a danger to you, your passengers, and other drivers. Stay focused on the road to get where you are going safely. More than 40 million people are expected on American highways this Thanksgiving weekend. For the holiday to be a happy one, every driver needs to be alert, awake, and sober.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Fight for Victims of Driver Negligence

Even though most fatal car accidents are preventable, careless drivers continue to pose a risk to others. The Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow are the voice of those affected by reckless drivers and their survivors. We fight for the compensation you and your family deserve. To discuss your car accident, contact us online or call 302-427-9500 today. We have offices in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford to serve the residents throughout the state of Delaware.

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