Pedestrian accidents are a leading cause of accidental injury and death in the United States. According to the transportation safety statistics reported by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), nearly 8,000 pedestrians lost their lives in unfortunate vehicular accidents in 2020. The number of deaths has been on a consistent rise over the past few decades as more and more people continue to adopt unsafe driving practices on roads everywhere. Most such accidents can be prevented if all drivers observe all traffic safety regulations.
Although any accident is a traumatizing and life-altering experience, the pain is compounded when you realize that the accident did not result from your negligence. If you find yourself in such a position after your accident, you can pursue legal action by holding the negligent driver at fault in a court of law. Enlisting the help of an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer is one of the best ways to ensure that no one would violate your legal rights.
The Right of Way
The United States law grants pedestrians certain rights regarding their time on the road. Each driver owes pedestrians a duty of care, which entails maintaining safe conditions through traffic regulations. For instance, a driver must yield to pedestrians when the walking signal says ‘walk.’ Similarly, if a driver sees a pedestrian crossing the road on a dedicated, marked crosswalk, they must yield the right of way to them. Drivers are responsible for slowing down their vehicles and making sure that they do not pose a threat to pedestrians on the road.
Although most pedestrian accidents result from the negligence of distracted drivers, it is not always the case. In some cases, pedestrians cross the road even when they do not have the right of way, a dangerous practice that can result in serious injury and even death. To ensure that they are not at fault for the accident, pedestrians must cross the road at marked crosswalks, as indicated by the walking sign. Moreover, they must yield the right of way to drivers if they cross the road at any other unmarked point. Pedestrians can also be held liable for the accident if it is discovered that they were walking along or adjacent to the road in an area where designated sidewalks were available. They must also walk in the opposite direction to the traffic, such that they face the incoming vehicles in their direction.
Determining negligence in pedestrian accidents can be highly challenging, and insurance companies on both sides try their best to minimize any legal claims to avoid honoring accident claims. However, with the help of a skilled attorney, you stand a good chance of getting justice for your injuries and property damage. A lawyer can help you obtain fair financial compensation through a trial or settlement outside the court.
If you suffered physical injury in a pedestrian accident due to someone else’s negligence, you could sue the party at fault to recover compensable damages. It’s best to reach out once you’ve gotten the medical attention you need. But make sure you find those legal services as soon as possible. A competent lawyer can help prove fault in such a case by compiling necessary evidence and getting you the justice, you deserve for your injury.