Articles Posted in Pedestrians

An elderly man was hit and killed as he walked across Lowell Street in Peabody after leaving St. Adelaide Church on Sunday. Theodore Buttner, 87, of Somerville was in town visiting family. “He was coming to visit us,” said Patricia Caton, his daughter. “He thought we were at the church, but we weren’t there. He was on his way to our house.”

The driver, Richard Franco, 84, of Peabody struck Buttner at around 1:00 p.m. with his 2004 Buick LeSabre, Police said. Buttner died later that night at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

Officials have not cited or charged Franco, and are still investigating the incident, said Peabody police Detective Michael Crane. A state police accident reconstruction team is helping to investigate. Officials will not release any additional details about the crash until the investigation is complete, Crane said.

Buttner, who went by the nickname Ted, regularly attended St. Adelaide’s when visiting family, even though he was from out of town. Caton learned her father was at church only after she received a phone call from Peabody police informing her that a car had hit him. “It was devastating,” Caton said.

Butter served in the Navy in World War II, stationed at Pearl Harbor. After that, he worked for the MBTA for 35 years. He was married to his late wife, Theresa, for 57 year. He had five children, seven grandchildren, and a great-granddaughter. “He loved to get together with us as a family,” Caton said. “He enjoyed the holidays and cookouts.” He was a devout Catholic, and met Cardinal Sean O’Malley when he visited St. Adelaide last year, said Canton.

A nurse and many others came to Buttner’s assistance on the day of the accident. “He was never alone; they stayed with him,” she said. “It means a lot to my family that he was not alone when that tragedy occurred.”
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A MA driver is now facing criminal charges after crashing his vehicle into a park bench in Haverhill, injuring a 71-year-old man on August 31.

Angel Suarez, 66, of Methuen, was arraigned in Haverhill District Court on multiple charges stemming from the collision. The victim, Victor Welch of Haverhill, who was sleeping on the bench at the GAR park across the street from the public library, lost his finger and suffered injury to his hip, ribs, and shoulder, said police. The district attorney’s office has not explained why it took over four months to bring Suarez to court.

Police said Suarez was driving drunk at the time, and that he also hit the Korean War Memorial. Suarez paused for approximately 30 seconds before driving off, said Prosecutor Stephen Patten. Suarez traveled over the New Hampshire border into Newton, where his SUV went off the road and he was arrested, police said.

Newton police found Suarez’s pockets contained three receipts from a restaurant in Salem, showing he purchased six margaritas and three beers about an hour before his vehicle went off the road on Route 108 in Newton, said police. Suarez failed a field sobriety test and was charged with driving drunk. A breathalyzer test showed he had a blood alcohol level of .196. “Police had to hold him up” and he “was in total disbelief that he was in New Hampshire, according to Patten.

In Haverhill Wednesday, Suarez was arraigned on charges of aggravated assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and three counts of leaving the scene of property damage.

Robert Lewin, Suarez’s defense attorney, said his client accepted “full responsibility” by pleading guilty to drunken driving in New Hampshire and that he will be participating in a drunk driver education program in New Hampshire this week. Also, Suarez had his license revoked indefinitely in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, Lewin said.

Patten asked Judge Stephen Abany to hold Suarez on $10,000 cash bail, arguing that Suarez has a “real problem with alcohol.” Lewin argued that a high bail isn’t justified because Suarez showed up for all of his hearings in New Hampshire, cooperated with Newton police, and allowed Haverhill police to search his vehicle.

Judge Abany ordered Suarez to return to court on February 27 for a pretrial hearing.
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State Police have apprehended the truck driver involved in a fatal hit-and-run collision on Tuesday night in Webster, MA. “The truck’s operator is a 44-year-old Dracut man, who was interviewed by field troopers and State Police detectives assigned to the Worcester District Attorney’s Office early this morning,” said a spokesman for the Massachusetts State Police. Authorities are not releasing his name at this time.

The driver struck and killed Jeremy Paige, 24, of Webster, MA at 11:10 p.m. while Paige was walking in the westbound travel lane on the ramp from Cudworth Road to Route 395. The driver continued driving until police stopped him in Woburn, MA shortly after midnight, said Mass State Police.

State Police officers investigating the incident tracked the vehicle to the LKO Corporation, and eventually found it on Route 93 near exit 37. Authorities had the truck towed to Cody’s tow yard, impounding it for further investigation, although initial reports indicate that it was in fact the vehicle involved in the crash, said the Mass State Police.

Authorities are still deciding whether to file criminal charges against the driver.

Hit-and-Run Collisions with Pedestrians

Our attorneys at Altman & Altman, LLP recognize the tragic consequences hit-and-run collisions can have for victims and their families. Unfortunately, these incidents happen too frequently in Massachusetts.

Drivers are legally required to stop after being involved in an accident. Most do, but some, perhaps fearing prosecution and jail time, flee the scene of the crash. When police eventually locate the driver, as they almost always do, the penalties will be stiffer than if he or she had stopped.
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A motor vehicle struck two pedestrians Wednesday night in Malden, MA. One of the pedestrians, a 50-year-old woman, died in the collision, Malden police said. Authorities have not released her name. The car also struck a 45-year-old man, resulting in his transportation to a local hospital for treatment.

Authorities did not release his name either, but his wife later identified him as “Mr. He.” She stated to the Malden Observer that the accident occurred after He had just exited the bus and was on his way home from work. “We’re still in shock,” she said. “He’s only one minute away from home, and in the middle of nowhere, there came a car driving so fast it just hit him. He didn’t see it coming at all..we’re still shaken by the whole thing and feel very bad about the woman who died from the accident, my husband was only one or two steps in front of her.”

He was released from Mass General Hospital on Thursday after reporting injuries to his head, neck, back, and leg. The family relocated to the United States from Guanzhou, China six years ago and currently reside in local public housing, said He’s wife.

The accident is still under investigation, said Malden Police Lt. Marc Gatcomb.

Police arrived at the scene of collision in the Broadway area Wednesday evening after receiving reports of a vehicle hitting two pedestrians. They have identified the driver, who remained at the scene until authorities arrived, as a local woman, offering no additional details.
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Newton Police have identified and cited the driver who allegedly hit an elderly pedestrian in Newton Centre, MA and fled the scene without stopping. The driver, a 26-year-old Newton woman, received a citation for leaving the scene of an accident after causing personal injury, said Newton Police Lt. Bruce Apotheker.

Injuries to the unidentified pedestrian, who was transported to Beth-Israel Hospital after the incident, are not life threatening, according to Apotheker.

The accident took place at approximately 5:30 p.m. on Monday as the 94-year-old male pedestrian was crossing Centre Street near the intersection with Langley Road. The pedestrian was not in the crosswalk when the vehicle struck him, Apotheker said.

The driver did not stop after hitting the pedestrian, and police were searching for a silver Toyota after having found a silver side-view mirror of a Toyota at the scene.

Roughly an hour after the incident, however, the driver contacted police.

Police have spoken to the driver and are investigating the incident. Authorities shut down parts of Newton Centre, including Centre Street and Pleasant Street, to investigate the accident.
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People no longer have to be in a car to be involved in a motor vehicle accident. Victims are involved in such accidents when they are struck by a car, and they suffer substantial injuries. On September 28th, 52-year old Mark Theobald was walking on Center Street in Stockton, Massachusetts when he was struck by an oncoming car. He was rushed to Boston Medical Center to be treated for his serious injuries, and as of October 1st, he remains in intensive care. The driver, Timothy Poh, reported the accident and no charges have been filed against him. The police assert that the driver will not be charged and found during the course of their investigation that the driver was not speeding but instead had a visibility issue.

Unfortunately, Theobald is not the only one who is injured by oncoming traffic. Just days before Theobald’s accident, a 55-year old bike rider who was hit by a SUV on Belmont Street. The man rode his bike across the street where no crosswalk is present and was struck by a blue Toyota Rav4. He was picked up and flown by a medical helicopter to be treated for his injuries. His injuries, which included serious head trauma, appear not to be life-threatening according to the local police. He was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash. The yellow bicycle was crumbled on the floor and the SUV had a crack on its windshield. This accident is no surprise to local residents, as the area has been known to be unsafe for everyone. The state Department of Transportation claims that the nearby intersection of Lorraine Avenue and Linwood Street is famous for accidents-millions of dollars in improvements are needed to make it safer. State reports from 2005 to 2007 indicate that the same intersection “had 56 crashes, which ranked 68th statewide during the time period.” The improvements, which include pedestrian crossing and traffic light installation, are scheduled to occur in the year 2014.

Another accident, occurring at the same time, involved a boy struck by a car on Battles Farm Drive and Battles Street. The child was transported to Signature Healthcare Brockton Hospital to be treated for his injuries. The police indicated that the boy was not seriously hurt. None of the drivers of these accidents are being charged by the police, as the police asserted that the drivers were not at fault for the accidents. The police did not even charge the truck driver who struck and killed a 3-year old girl earlier this month.
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A woman from Brighton was struck by a tow truck as she was crossing the street on Thursday evening. The woman was rushed to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center for treatment, but was pronounced dead today. The name of the trucking company has not been given, but the company is believed to be based in Brighton or Allston. According to reports, the woman was hit crossing market street, near the intersection of Chestnut Hill Avenue and Washington Street.

According to a passenger in the tow truck at the time of the accident, the tow truck allegedly had the green light to turn from Chestnut Hill Avenue to Washington Street but had already begun to turn when it saw the woman and was unable to stop. Further details, including whether or not the trucking driver/company will face charges, have not been released. The case is being investigated by the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office.

Our sympathies are with the family of the deceased. If you or a loved one has been injured as a driver or pedestrian in a car or truck crash in Massachusetts, you should contact an experienced car accident attorney to determine whether you may be able to financially recover.

Concord Police report that an elderly Westford woman was driving last Saturday morning to a dialysis appointment in Concord when she turned from Commonwealth Avenue onto Winthrop Street and struck three pedestrians. The victims were a mother with two of her children who were out for a walk. The mother was reportedly pushing her 20-month-old son in a stroller and her five-year-old son was riding his bicycle next to them. Police report that after the woman´s vehicle, a 1999 Toyota Camry, turned the corner and hit the pedestrians, it continued to drive across Winthrop Street and onto a home´s lawn and did not stop until it crashed into a garage.

At approximately 9 a.m., Concord Police and Fire Departments responded to the area for a report of a pedestrian accident. Concord Police Lieutenant Tom Mulcahy commented, “When responders arrived at the scene they treated a mother and her two children as well as the driver of the vehicle.”

The three pedestrians, as well as the driver, were transported to Emerson Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. According to Mulcahy, the 20-month-old boy was transported by MedFlight helicopter to Children’s Hospital Boston with serious but non-life threatening injuries.

The accident is remains under investigation by the Concord Police Department and the Massachusetts State Police Reconstruction Team. Speed has been ruled out as a factor as the cause of the crash. It is not yet known whether or not the elderly driver will face charges.
Statistics show that in the next 20 years, the number of elderly drivers is predicted to triple in the United States and that older drivers are more likely than younger ones to be involved in pedestrian accidents, especially at intersections. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that “In 1997, older people made up 9 percent of the resident population but accounted for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities and 17 percent of all pedestrian fatalities.”

If you have been involved in a Massachusetts pedestrian accident or car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced a Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

Elderly Driver Hits Mother, 2 Children In Concord, CBS Boston, February 4, 2012
Four people hospitalized after pedestrian crash in Concord, Wicked Local Concord, February 4, 2012
Older Drivers, Elderly Driving, Seniors at the Wheel, Traffic and Safety, SmartMotorist.com
Traffic Safety Facts 1997; Older Population, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation
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A Peabody police officer was seriously injured this week when he was hit while working a paid detail at a construction site on Route 1 in Peabody. Sergeant Eric Zawacki, 37, was standing next to his police cruiser when a driver of a black Chevrolet Avalanche stopped and asked the officer for directions. A 1991 red Chevrolet pick-up truck driven by Elroy Halfrey, 76, of Salem, N.H., then hit both Zawacki as a pedestrian and crashed into the truck that was pulled over for directions, causing both a pedestrian accident and a two-car crash. Zawacki was thrown over the hood of the truck. He was taken Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston where he remains in critical condition.

David Procopio, Massachusetts police spokesperson, confirmed that he had surgery for his serious injuries and is expected to survive. Massachusetts General Public Affairs Officer Kory Dodd reported that Zawacki was in serious condition and that his “vital signs are unstable and not within normal limits. The patient is acutely ill.”

After the crash, Halfrey remained at the scene of the accident. Although the accident is still under investigation, police commented that the wet roads and the driver´s speed were each potential factors of the accident. State Police Lieutenant Tracy Webber said, “It’s still a preliminary investigation…Because it’s an active work zone, that is a contributing factor too. The roadway was wet, that comes into play.” She said police will determine if the driver of the red pickup truck will be charged.

Peabody Police Detective Michael Crane said that although no charges have yet been filed against the suspect, he said “I’m sure once they are done with [the State Police investigation] if a citation is required they will process that accordingly.”

If you have been involved in a Massachusetts pedestrian or car accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced a Massachusetts car accident lawyer.

Sources:

Peabody police sergeant struck, seriously injured by vehicle on Route 1, www.boston.com, December 5, 2011
Peabody officer working detail hit by car, seriously injured, The Boston Herald , December 5, 2011
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U.S. Marine Corps veteran Edwin Nelson, 65, was killed when his motorized wheelchair was hit by oncoming traffic earlier this week in Brockton. According to witnesses, Nelson was crossing in a crosswalk on Belmont Street, also known as Route 123, when a Hyundai Elantra driven by 26-year-old Frank Dernoga, of Taunton, crashed into his wheelchair. He was knocked off his wheelchair near the crosswalk and rolled into the street. He was taken to Good Samaritan Medical Center and was pronounced dead.

Nelson was living at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center which is located less than a mile away from the crash site. He was a Vietnam veteran with a spinal cord injury that led to the amputation of both of his legs. His son, Geoff Nelson, wrote that his father had been a part of research to help pioneer spinal-cord medicine over the past 36 years, along with many other spinal-cord injury patients at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Nelson’s fatal accident has drawn attention to safety issues for pedestrians on Belmont Street, especially for disabled veterans who frequent the notoriously busy street. A spokeswoman for the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Pallis Wahl, said that a treatment team including a doctor, nurse, and social worker, evaluates each patient on an individual basis to determine the necessary care and whether or not a patient needs to be escorted when outside of the facility. It was determined that Nelson was fit to be outside of the facility without supervision from an escort. Wahl said, “It’s a case-by-case basis.”

Some local residents believe that the disabled patients should always have an escort for their own safety given the circumstances of Belmont Street. One resident commented, “It is sad…I’ve seen the conditions of driving on Belmont Street. It’s atrocious.”

Police are reportedly reviewing surveillance video from a business close to the scene of the accident that captured the crash. There has not been any decision as of this week as to whether Dernoga will face charges.

If you have been injured in a Massachusetts car accident or involved in a pedestrian, wheelchair, or bike accident, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced Massachusetts lawyer.

Sources:

Disabled vet killed in Brockton accident helped pioneer spinal-cord medicine, Taunton Daily Gazette, October 26, 2011
Military veteran killed in Brockton road crash, www.Boston.com, October 24, 2011
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