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Pedestrian Accidents and Norfolk’s Tide – Five Light-Rail Safety Tips

I pride myself in helping clients through their toughest times.- Bill O’Mara

Attorney at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers

Pedestrian Accidents and Norfolk’s Tide – Five Light-Rail Safety Tips

The Tide has been running in Norfolk for more than five years without a pedestrian suffering an injury. That changed last November when a man was hit by a train outside the Civic Plaza Station on Union Street.

In a recent report, the Virginian-Pilot noted Hampton Roads Transit officials cleared the train operator of any wrongdoing.

However, the report notes a potential issue in which a second train created a temporary blind spot to pedestrians.

Judging by the report, the pedestrian appears to have been lucky to escape the incident with non-life-threatening injuries.

The Tide

The Tide light rail (Norfolk.gov)

The Pilot reported HRT released footage of the incident last month. The incident occurred on Nov. 18. The footage was taken from the side camera of the train. A westbound train turned the corner. The report stated the passing train created a blind spot.

After the trains crossed paths, three pedestrians were seen crossing the tracks. Two of them saw the oncoming train and jumped back. However, the other man appeared oblivious. He was seen disappearing under the train on the camera.

The train stopped. The pedestrian was left partially under the train. Jim Price. HRT’s director of operations said the man was taken to a local hospital for cuts, bruises, and contusions after the wreck. Although he was still conscious, he seemed to be unable to walk.

Price said the train operator suffered emotional trauma after the accident.

The report noted no previous accidents involving pedestrians occurred in the five-year history of The Tide in Norfolk.

HRT reiterated the importance of vigilance around its trains that share the streets of Norfolk with car drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists.

Here are some Tide Safety Tips

  1. Only cross the tracks at designated crosswalks. Do so quickly. Don’t linger on the tracks
  2. Always look both ways before crossing. Never cross or try to get across before an approaching train or between two trains that are not moving. If a departing train is blocking your view, be sure it is out of sight before you try to cross.
  3. If you are driving, use caution when sharing the road with trains. Be attentive to changing traffic patterns and follow the roadway.
  4. Don’t use headphones or be distracted by other devices when you are around trains.
  5. Always listen for warning bells, sirens of the approach of a train.

If you are injured by a train, ta train operator or another road user could be to blame. Please call us for a free consultation at (757) 455-0077.

John Cooper

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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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