Normally a relaxed summer getaway for visitors, Rhode Island’s Block Island has suffered a number of tragic traffic fatalities as well as a number of serious injuries over the last month. In early August, a male teenager from Connecticut suffered fatal injuries in a car accident when the female driver, suspected of being intoxicated, lost control of her vehicle on West Side Road. Later that same week, a 22-year old Cranston man riding a moped was killed in a head-on collision with an SUV. Most recently, a passenger was injured in a roll-over crash and the 20-year old driver under suspicion for driving under the influence. As a personal injury lawyer in Rhode Island, Attorney David Tapalian is used to seeing a spike in car accidents during the summer months, however, this season is out of the ordinary for Block Island.
This summer has been marked by tragedy and serious concern from Block Island residents and long-time vacationers. Typically, a summer retreat for longer stays, the island is experiencing visits from a higher than usual number of people visiting for the day, possibly due to the coronavirus pandemic. With vacations put on hold for most, the desire to “get away” is still there. Some are satisfying that desire with local day trips, many of whom are unfamiliar with the island and unfortunately, under the influence of alcohol while operating vehicles.
In particular, mopeds on Block Island are getting a bad rap lately due to a rash of serious crashes, including the deadly collision between a moped and an SUV in mid-August. At least 55 crashes involving mopeds have been reported on the island so far this year, an increase from the past two years. Due to the lack of protection afforded a person on a moped, Personal Injury Attorney David Tapalian has seen significant injuries result when a moped collides with a vehicle, particularly a heavy SUV or truck. Grave concern has resulted in a backlash against moped rental companies and a tightening of restrictions on rentals. Moped rentals are always a popular attraction to visiting tourists, however, locals are pushing to tighten rental restrictions, or ban the vehicles all together, due to the number of the crashes resulting from inexperienced moped drivers, reckless use, and disregard for the rules of the road.
In Rhode Island, moped operators are required to follow the same rules of the road as motor vehicle operators, including obeying traffic signals. Although the speed of these vehicles is normally under 30 mph, when a moped collides with a vehicle, the injuries to the moped driver and any passengers can be severe or deadly, especially if the rider or passenger is not wearing a helmet. As with a car accident, an injured moped rider may be able to hold the at-fault driver of the vehicle responsible for the accident, liable for damages. Any person involved in a moped accident caused by the fault of another driver should consult a personal injury lawyer in Rhode Island to determine their eligibility to seek compensation for their physical injuries and property damages.
Car Accidents on Block Island
In addition to moped accidents, Block Island has experienced some dangerous car accidents this summer, again, marked by inexperience, negligence, and alcohol use. Certain roads on the island are hilly, and both sides crowded with bikers and moped riders, making it difficult to safely navigate the area. To those unfamiliar with the winding roads, speeding, or driving intoxicated, the drive can be even more treacherous. A 16-year-old boy riding as a passenger was tragically killed when the driver, suspected of being intoxicated, lost control of the vehicle on unfamiliar roads. Tragic incidents like this are motivating locals to push for stricter legal enforcement.
Contact a Rhode Island Personal Injury Attorney If You Are Hurt in an Accident
If you, or a loved one, have been hurt in a car accident, moped crash, motorcycle collision, or bike accident on Block Island, Newport, or anywhere in Rhode Island or Massachusetts, Tapalian Law is here for you. With over two decades of experience helping injured victims, David Tapalian is a top-rated injury lawyer who can help you seek compensation from the negligent driver responsible for causing the accident. You may be eligible to seek compensation for your medical expenses, hospital bills, lost wages, vehicle damage, and pain and suffering. With offices in Providence, Warwick, and Seekonk, MA, we are conveniently located to all areas of RI and MA. If you are injured and can’t come to us, we will visit you in the hospital or at home. Call Tapalian Law today for a free consultation at 401-552-5000, or contact us online.