Margaret McGeary Union City: Margaret “Peggy” McGeary From Hoboken Killed In Union City Truck Accident While Riding Bicycle By Palisade Avenue at Paterson Plank Road
UNION CITY, NEW JERSEY (November 27, 2019) – A 79-year-old Hoboken woman identified as Margaret McGeary and known as “Peggy” has tragically died in a bicycle accident after being hit by a commercial truck near Palisade Avenue at Paterson Plank Road.
Union City police officials are saying that the accident took place around 10:17 a.m. on a busy stretch of road. A Cali Carting truck began making a right turn when it struck Margaret McGeary.
The 79-year-old victim was knocked to the ground and seriously injured. Paramedics took the woman to the Jersey City Medical Center.
Despite life-saving measures Margaret McGeary later died due to her injuries. The driver of the “roll-off” garbage truck remained at the scene and cooperated with authorities.
Margaret McGeary was well known as an exceptionally talented quilter. “She made extraordinarily beautiful pieces of art with fabric. Her pieces also told a story,” said Liz Cohen, an artist who had known the victim for four decades.
There was an outpouring of grief online following news of the woman’s death. According to one user, “RIP to the poor woman. Isn’t it odd it seems to [that] trash haulers [are] involved in of many of these deaths. A pedestrian was killed on Nov 5th by one at Broadway and Route 1 and 9.”
According to another user who commented on the story, “That road segment is very dangerous.” An investigation into the Union City truck accident remains ongoing at this time.
Liability In Union City Truck Accidents
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, “A total of 4,102 people died in large truck crashes in 2017. Seventeen percent of these deaths were truck occupants, 68 percent were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles, and 14 percent were pedestrians, bicyclists or motorcyclists. The number of people who died in large truck crashes was 30 percent higher in 2017 than in 2009, when it was the lowest it has been since the collection of fatal crash data began in 1975. The number of truck occupants who died was 52 percent higher than in 2009.” There are a number of factors commonly associated with truck accidents including:
- Interruption of the traffic flow
- Unfamiliarity with roadway
- Inadequate surveillance
- Driving too fast for conditions
- Illegal maneuvers
Fatigue, in particular, is one of the greatest contributing factors for truck accidents. Truck drivers are put under an enormous amount of pressure to complete their routes on time. They naturally get tired like everyone else and may not see pedestrians in the roadway. Staying awake for even 18 hours can reduce driving ability equivalent to driving with a BAC of 0.05. Many truck drivers also take prescription medications which can affect their ability to drive safely.
Truck drivers have a legal obligation to yield the right of way to pedestrians that are in lawfully marked crosswalks. According to the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission, “Motorists should take special precautions to watch for pedestrians. Pedestrians have the right-of-way at all intersections, including intersections with no crosswalk markings (“unmarked crosswalks”).” When a truck driver fails to yield the right of way to pedestrians the company that they work for could face civil liability. Generally speaking, companies are responsible for the negligent conduct of their employees – insofar as those employees are working within the course and scope of their job duties.
The family of any victim that died in a truck accident may have legal recourse through a wrongful death claim. Damages in a civil claim can help cover lost wages, medical bills, funeral expenses and pain and suffering. Potential beneficiaries in a civil claim may include a victim’s spouse, children, parents siblings. Unfortunately, truck companies will often work hard to deny legal responsibility for an accident. This is why it’s so important that evidence is properly preserved and collected after an accident. A truck accident attorney can examine all of the facts of your case and let you know what your legal rights are.
Investigating A Union City Truck Accident
We at Pulvers, Pulvers & Thompson extend our deepest condolences to the family of Margaret McGeary. Any person that may have seen what happened should reach out to the Union City police department as they continue their investigation. It is our sincere hope that city officials will consider safety measures along this stretch of road to make it less dangerous for bicyclists.