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Run away van kills woman and seriously injures man

A tragic pedestrian versus car crash happened in Queens last week. According to authorities, a 29-year-old man had parked his white van on the corner of the road. However, after the driver exited the vehicle it started to roll away backward along 32nd street and it struck two pedestrians, a male and a female, before colliding with a food cart.

According to a witness, the 80-year-old female pedestrian was run over by the van's back and front wheels. The van ran over her neck, the witness said, and then it struck the 71-year-old male pedestrian, who was tending to the food cart, which was also struck. Fortunately, the 71-year-old man's co-worker was able to push him out of the direct path of the truck -- an act of bravery that very well may have saved the elderly man's life.

Both of the pedestrians had been on the sidewalk when they were hit by the runaway van, which eventually struck a wall and came to a stop. A witness indicated that the driver claimed he thought he put his vehicle in park, but he had really put it in reverse. After getting out of the van, it started to go backward and sped up quickly. The van crossed Broadway and flew down 32nd street, went up onto a sidewalk, and struck the victims.

Pedestrians who are injured by negligent drivers in New York could have strong claims to seek financial damages relating to injuries. Often, pedestrians are deemed to have the right of way in a car crash; and, depending on the facts and evidence surrounding the case, if it is successfully navigated, injured pedestrians can try to recover money from the at-fault party to pay for property damages, medical care, and other categories of damages.

Source: Gothamist, "1 Dead, 1 Injured After Driverless Van Rolls Onto Astoria Sidewalk," Jen Chung, Sep. 01, 2016

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