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Hit and Run Driver Injures Man in Wheelchair in Newport News

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Attorney at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers

Hit and Run Driver Injures Man in Wheelchair in Newport News

By Jim Hurley, Newport News Personal Injury Attorney

An accident in Newport News in which a man in a wheelchair was struck and injured by a hit-and-run driver has again highlighted the dangers pedestrians face in urban Hampton Roads.

Newport News police confirmed a man in a wheelchair was hit by a red Ford Mustang Wednesday just after 8 a.m. close to the intersection of Jefferson Avenue and Peninsula Drive.

A man in a wheelchair was injured in Newport News

watch out for wheelchairs when you are driving

Lou Thurston, a spokesman for Newport News Police, said the 62-year-old victim was on the sidewalk, with his leg extended onto out into the road, when the car struck him. He received a leg injury in the accident, according to media reports. Witnesses said the driver who hit the man stopped, and then drove away from the accident scene.

As a personal injury lawyer who represents people who have been hurt in Newport News, I am appalled by the details of this accident. People in wheelchairs are particularly vulnerable and this victim could have been seriously injured.

There is little evidence that the highways of Hampton Roads are becoming safer for pedestrians. A report released this week highlighted  a spike in accidents involving pedestrians last year.

The report produced by the Governors Highway Safety Association, an organization that represents governors’ highway safety offices, estimates pedestrian deaths rose as much as 10 percent last year.

The report by Richard Retting and Dr. Heather Rothenberg of Sam Schwartz Consulting followed an analysis of preliminary data reported by all 50 state highway safety agencies and the District of Columbia for the first six months of 2015.

Parts of Hampton Roads such as the Peninsula have seen a number of serious accidents involving wheelchairs in recent years. In 2011, a man in a wheelchair was killed crossing Mercury Boulevard in Hampton, the Daily Press reported.

A wheelchair-bound woman in Suffolk was killed during bad weather. In 1999, a woman in a wheelchair was struck and killed by a school bus at the intersection of Oyster Point Road and Jefferson Avenue in Newport News.

Drivers have a responsibility to look out for pedestrians. They should be extra careful when they see vulnerable people such as the elderly, the disabled and children. Pedestrians have rights, particularly when they are on sidewalks or crosswalks. See this article about the rights of pedestrians in Virginia. If you have been hurt by the actions of a driver, call us for a free consultation at (757) 455-0077 or see

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John Cooper

John Cooper is a veteran of personal injury law practice in Virginia. A native Virginian, he was raised in Norfolk and Virginia Beach. He has more than 20 years of experience handling personal injury cases and recently handled the largest auto accident settlement in 2010, according to VA Lawyers Weekly. The award provided $3.5 million to a child whose young father died when the vehicle he was a passenger in was rear-ended by a careless truck driver.

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Jim Hurley

Jim Hurley has been practicing law throughout Virginia for more than two-and-a-half decades. During his career, he has tried more than 100 jury trials — a staggering number — and handled hundreds more that were settled out of court. He is guided by the principle that the client is in charge of his or her case and should be kept fully aware of the litigation process. Jim has been awarded an AV Rating by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating given, for his practice of law. He was named in Virginia Super Lawyers in 2014, 2015, 2016.

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Bill O’mara

Bill O’Mara started his legal career in 2008, moving back to his home town of Chesapeake, VA. He has practiced in the field of plaintiffs’ personal injury and other litigation. He has gained extensive court room and trial experience, including contested trials before judges and juries across Hampton Roads. In 2014, Mr. O’Mara joined Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers as an associate attorney. He became a partner in 2017.

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