Many residents of New Jersey and Pennsylvania go to the Jersey shore for vacation. People who visit the shore during the summer also tend to get into accidents with greater frequency than when they are at home. People are in an unfamiliar setting and are engaging in activities they normally don't do at home.
Picture this scene at the shore: A mom pushing a beach cart and her two children are walking to the beach from their rental home located two blocks from the beach. They attempt to cross Beach Avenue at a crosswalk. A college student is driving his open air jeep north on Beach Avenue.
As the college kid approaches the intersection, his front seat passenger, a 20 year-old young lady who has spent the afternoon in a beachfront bar competing in and winning a wet t-shirt contest while downing several alcoholic beverages, decides to display her winning assets to a group of young men hanging out on the front porch of a house. This distracts the driver of the jeep, who also had several drinks while watching his girlfriend compete in the contest, to a degree that he takes his eyes off the road altogether and stares intently at his passenger.
As the mom and her children cross the crosswalk, one of the children starts to run ahead. Because the driver's attention is on his girlfriend, he does not see the child running through the crosswalk until it is too late. He swerves his car suddenly in an attempt to avoid the girl but hits her anyway. The little girl died after the collision. His passenger, due to the fact that she was drunk, was unable to properly fasten her seat belt. As a result, she was thrown from the jeep and seriously injured.
In all likelihood, this type of accident scenario probably would not happen to any of the individuals involved at home. The two individuals in the jeep were both underage, never drank at home, and certainly the girl never participated in wet t-shirt contests at home. They were are vacation, wanted to have some fun, and acted out of character.
Who is legally responsible for the injuries to the jeep passenger? The driver of the jeep? The mom who did not maintain control over her child? The bar that sold the alcohol to both the passenger and the driver of the jeep?
How about the injuries to the girl? The driver of the jeep? The bar that sold alcohol to the underage driver?
This hypothetical situation is obviously a bit over the top. However, it does illustrate the fact that things can and do happen at the shore that don’t happen elsewhere. People get injured in situations and while engaged in activities that simply would not happen at home.
If you were in a car or pedestrian accident at the Jersey shore and have questions about your rights, feel free to contact our office to schedule a FREE case evaluation. 877.944.8396