Summer in the Northeast, and especially in Massachusetts, is an opportunity for thousands to enjoy water sports or to get a boat into a harbor, lake, river, or pond. But this summer has seen an unprecedented spike in the number of boaters and, unfortunately, a commensurate rise in boating accidents.
After 17-years of negotiations, bills that stalled and failed in the Assembly, and pleas from safety advocates, the Massachusetts Assembly passed a bill with teeth that addressed the growing epidemic of distracted driving. It took effect in February 2020 with officers initially issuing warnings to distracted drivers. In late March, officers began citing drivers who violated the new law.
A four-vehicle crash in Concord, Massachusetts this summer resulted in fatal injuries to an 87-year old Concord woman. The accident occurred around 2:50 in the afternoon on Route 2 near Sudbury Road. All four vehicles were in the eastbound lane of Route 2 when traffic began to slow. A 2014 Jeep Cherokee driven by an Arlington man apparently failed to notice the slowing traffic and slammed into the rear of a Honda Civic driven by the 87-year old victim. Her car was propelled into a 2020 Toyota Corolla that in turn rear-ended a 2014 Ford Taurus.
Lexington Center is the hub of the town of Lexington, Massachusetts and is positioned around Massachusetts Avenue. It is well-known as the site of the Battle of Lexington, the first battle of the American Revolution, with a visitor center that attracts over 100,000 visitors each year.
A hit-and-run accident in Lynn, Massachusetts earlier this summer left a man in serious condition while police struggled to find the perpetrator. The accident occurred on Lynnfield Street near Cumberland Circle where a vehicle struck a 55-year old male pedestrian. Witnesses told firefighters and police that they saw a dark vehicle fleeing the scene.
Massachusetts motorists seem to be curiously at odds with safe driving habits. In a recent study of driving behavior, car accidents, and what factors can help American drivers become safer, Massachusetts found itself as having the highest percentage of drivers with a prior at-fault accidents, which means we have more car accidents than any other state. Our percentage of drivers with previous accident histories is 17.14% as compared to the national average of 12.45%. Michigan has the lowest rate at 6.18%.
A Massachusetts man driving a Tesla with the autopilot engaged was involved in an accident with a police car is now facing negligent driving charges. His defense is that the autopilot system installed on his Tesla malfunctioned or at least failed to either warn him of the impending crash or failed to take steps to avoid the accident.
A recent fatal hit-and-run accident in Chelsea, Massachusetts in early July 2020 brought home the sobering reality that irresponsible and reckless drivers still roam our streets. Sometime after midnight, a male pedestrian in his 40’s was struck and killed on 6th and Walnut Street. The driver fled the scene only to be apprehended a few hours later in Peabody. The suspect was identified as a man in his 20s.
In early July, a 21-year old Plymouth man suffered fatal injuries in a multi-car crash on the Massachusetts Turnpike in Westfield. The accident occurred around 3:00 p.m. when three vehicles initially collided in the westbound lanes at the 39.6-mile marker, not far from the Exit 3 turnoff. None of the occupants at this point were seriously injured until a 2003 Peterbilt heavy tow truck approaching the crash scene rear-ended one of the stopped vehicles, a 2005 Nissan Altima driven by the unfortunate 21-year old Plymouth man, who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Although a number of auto insurers have voluntarily reduced their rates for the past two months, Massachusetts State Attorney General Maura Healey recently sent an open letter to letter to Insurance Commissioner Gary Anderson imploring him to ask all auto and business insurers to a drop their premiums. The number of accidents since the state implemented its lockdown have substantially decreased with Massachusetts experiencing a 50% to 55% drop in traffic levels. Accidents in many states are down by 50% or more. With fewer cars on the road, the risk for accidents has drastically fallen.