Improved Traffic Laws Needed For Motorcyclists, Bicyclists And Pedestrians, Says N.Y. Lawyer

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New study shows those groups are involved in half of all fatal traffic accidents worldwide, says New York attorney Steven J. Schwartzapfel.

Enforcement of traffic regulations is the key, especially in heavy urban areas such as New York City.

A new report from the World Health Organization, the public health agency of the United Nations, states that 1.27 million people worldwide die each year in road traffic crashes, and nearly half are motorcyclists, bicyclists or pedestrians.

Traffic accidents are the leading cause of death for people aged 10 to 24, and the 10th leading cause of death in the world, after heart disease, lower respiratory infections, HIV/AIDS and other health conditions, the report states.

The report underscores the need for improved traffic safety laws, enforcement and road design, a New York attorney says.

"Motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians don't get the protection they need from the legal system, the police, or the traffic planners," said New York attorney Steven J. Schwartzapfel, founding member of Schwartzapfel Truhowsky Marcus P.C., a personal injury law firm. "In some places, ensuring the safety of motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians may be a matter of reducing speed limits or better enforcement. In others, it may require better road maintenance and/or design."

Traffic safety regulations aren't keeping pace with growth, particularly in emerging countries where development has put more cars on the road ahead of traffic safety laws, Schwartzapfel said. Many countries still do not have comprehensive laws to prevent drunk driving or require seat belt use and lower speed limits in urban areas, according to the report.

The report also states that building sidewalks and raised crossings for pedestrians, along with separate lanes for two-wheeled vehicles, can help to protect these road users who do not have the protective shell of a car around them.

"The report certainly suggests that governments can do more to prevent injuries and deaths from road accidents," Schwartzapfel said. "Enforcement of traffic regulations is the key, especially in heavy urban areas such as New York City."

About Schwartzapfel Truhowsky Marcus P.C.
Schwartzapfel Truhowsky Marcus P.C. is a prominent and well-respected plaintiff personal injury litigation firm in New York, with more than 150 years of combined experience and highly competent co-counsel throughout the country.

The firm focuses on all types of personal injury litigation, including auto, motorcycle, bicycle and pedestrian accidents, complex highway design defect cases, medical malpractice, nursing home neglect, wrongful death, construction accidents, workplace injuries, workers' compensation and Social Security disability. For more information, contact the firm at (800) 866-4999 or through its Web site at http://www.fightingforyou.com/ .

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