After a hit-and-run accident took the lives of two New Jersey residents, police investigators had little evidence with which to locate and apprehend the unknown driver. However, after some dedicated detective work and a little bit of luck, the police located and arrested the suspect a few days ago, hopefully providing some closure to the families of the crash victims.
According to federal traffic safety data, the number of deaths on U.S. roads has decreased significantly in recent years. However, the decline in fatal car accidents is not due to safer and more conscientious driving habits, but to innovative safety features in new vehicles.
In 2005, a 16-year-old New Jersey teenager was paralyzed from the chest down in a single-car crash when the vehicle in which she was a passenger slammed into a telephone pole. A police investigation later revealed that road rage was responsible for the car accident. After being cut off by another vehicle, the driver of the car in which the girl was a passenger began speeding and weaving through traffic, and ultimately crashed the car.
Last week, a drunk driver was involved in a violent three-car accident in Middletown. The driver, a 37-year-old man from Toms River, New Jersey, was also operating his vehicle with a suspended license. The crash occurred after dark close to the Navesink Country Club.
When a Jersey City man made the decision to get high on drugs and then get behind the wheel, he set in motion a series of events that would alter the lives of two New Jersey families forever. Driving well over the speed limit, the man crashed his sport-utility vehicle into a taxi, causing that vehicle to catch fire and pushing it onto the sidewalk directly into a pedestrian. When all was said and done, two men were dead. The man responsible for the accident walked away uninjured.
A New Jersey woman was killed this week following a bizarre accident in which a dump truck carrying a full load of sand toppled onto its side on top of the woman's SUV, trapping her inside as sand spilled inside and over her vehicle.
As military service members return home to Bergen County from the war in Iraq, they will likely go through a period of adjustment as they work to reacclimate themselves to the lives they left behind. Often, this includes reconnecting with family and friends and starting or resuming their job. But for some veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and similar afflictions, seemingly simple acts such as driving can be difficult and stressful after a tour of duty.
In August 2009, a New Jersey man with a suspended license was driving recklessly near Bergen County when his and another vehicle crossed the median and collided with oncoming traffic, killing two people and injuring three others. Last week, the man pleaded guilty to causing death and serious bodily injury while driving with a suspended license in exchange for a decreased sentence.
Although we are just a few days into 2012, the New Jersey State Police is likely already setting its agenda for the new year: determining why there were so many car accident deaths lasts year, and figuring out how to lower that number in the coming year.
Earlier this week, we wrote about a recent study indicating that teenage drivers are more likely to drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs on New Year's Eve than on any other holiday or event. That study also reported that teenagers would refrain from driving drunk if one of their passengers asked them too.