Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents are typically caused by negligence on the part of the vehicle driver. While distracted walking — including intoxicated pedestrians, or those who are texting, talking on the phone or listening to music — is playing a growing role in this type of accident, this is most commonly only a contributing factor and not the primary cause.
Reckless driving, speeding and failure to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians are just a few ways drivers cause pedestrian versus car accidents. Another very common cause of pedestrian accidents is drivers who fail to use caution when coming around a corner. Often times, motorists turn a corner at a moderate rate of speed, not realizing there are pedestrians crossing the street at the intersection.
In almost all cases, pedestrians have the right-of-way. This is especially true when they are crossing in a crosswalk or at an intersection even when a crosswalk is not marked. If a vehicle violates that right-of-way and causes an accident, the motorist can almost always be held accountable for their injuries.
Because pedestrians are at such a high risk of severe injuries if they are struck by a car or other vehicle, the laws are structured in ways that best protect the safety of pedestrians. On the rare occasion that motorists are not found at-fault in this type of accident, it is usually because the pedestrian stepped out in front of moving traffic with no warning and the driver was unable to stop before hitting them.
If you were hit by a car while traveling on foot, there is a good chance the driver who hit you can be held liable for your injuries and forced to pay compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. An experienced lawyer can look at your case to determine where the liability lies, and help you file an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit.
Common Pedestrian Injuries
Pedestrian injuries vary widely after being involved in a collision with a vehicle. A small car moving under 25 miles per hour hitting someone on-foot may leave the victim with only scrapes, cuts and bruises. A larger vehicle moving at a faster speed may cause broken bones, back or neck injuries and head trauma.
In some cases, what seems like a minor incident can also cause this type of serious injury. This is especially true when the victim strikes their head on the pavement, or another surface after being hit.
Getting the Compensation You Deserve
After any type of personal injury accident, the victim is entitled to collect compensation for the damages caused by the at-fault party’s negligence. This can include:
- Medical expenses
- Wage loss
- Medical equipment and devices
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress damages
In order to collect this compensation, you will have to prove your damages. For economic damages such as medical expenses, this is a fairly easy task. Hospital bills, receipts for medical equipment and employment documents such as pay stubs can be used to prove these losses. Proving the non-economic loss is more difficult. Keeping a journal about how your injuries impact your life can help, as can expert witnesses who your lawyer can hire to testify on your behalf if necessary.
Pedestrian Hit and Run Accidents
When a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle but the driver doesn’t stop, many victims worry that they have no one to hold accountable. In many cases, though, even if they don’t happen to get a license plate number or the name of the driver, the pedestrian can still recover compensation under their own uninsured motorist coverage or underinsured motorist coverage.
Additionally, if the pedestrian accident occurs in an area where there are frequent pedestrian accidents there may be other factors at play causing these crashes. It may be an issue of how that crosswalk or how the traffic lights are set up, and there may be liability on the part of the municipality. If it proves to be a dangerous condition of public property for pedestrians, the city or county may be responsible for paying for your injuries.
Even in a hit and run when no witnesses can identify the at-fault driver, you may have other options to recover compensation. This could include you own automobile insurance, or from insurance from adjacent properties, or from the municipality that controls the intersection.
Working with Triebsch & Frampton, APC
Triebsch & Frampton, APC helps all types of injured people, following all types of accidents. If you suffered a crosswalk injury, we can guide you through the process of physical recovery while also helping you recover every dime available to you. If you need an attorney in Central Valley, call Triebsch & Frampton, APC today at (209) 667-2300.