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New Jersey man dies after brake pad flies into van on I-78

Trucks kill many New Jersey residents every year. Many people die in truck accidents caused by negligent drivers who drift into different lanes of traffic on New Jersey highways. Others die when trucks are poorly maintained and create debris on state roads. Truck debris can be rather large and cause accidents by hitting passenger vehicles or by causing motorists to swerve into other vehicles.

One Hunterdon County man’s family now has to deal with his wrongful death after what has been alternatively described as a flying brake pad or a brake drum crashed into his van window on Route 78. The brake drum flew into the van windshield and hit the man in the head. The man suffered very serious brain trauma and was rushed to St Luke’s Hospital Trauma Center where he was later pronounced dead.

Police believe that the brake pad or drum came from a large commercial vehicle. There were four people in the van when the freak accident occurred and two of the passengers were able to regain control of the van and prevent the tragedy from claiming more lives. The passengers guided the van safely to the left shoulder and called emergency crews. One of the passengers also sustained head injuries but only the driver suffered life-threatening injuries.

Although the facts of this particular case are unclear, truck owners are typically held liable for personal injuries arising out of a negligently maintained truck. Experienced personal injury attorneys may pursue personal injury and wrongful death suits against the truck driver, truck owner and even the cargo owner to make sure that truck accident victims receive all of the compensation that they deserve.

Source: Home News Tribune, “Hunterdon driver struck by flying brake pad on I-78,” Walter O’Brien, 5/24/11; WFMZ, “Brake Drum Smashes Through Van Windshield, Kills Driver,” Kyle Anderson, 5/24/11

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