Walking is great exercise, but when you live in an urbanized area like LA and Santa Monica, walking becomes a Schrodinger’s Cat paradox. On one hand, you’re getting the exercise your body needs, but on the other, you’ve elevated your risk of death substantially – especially if you’ve elected to walk on sidewalks adjacent to roadways. The more you walk near the proximity of cars, you increase your risk of being involved in one of many pedestrian accidents that happen every year.
US Statistics: Pedestrian Accidents
In a year, over 5,000 pedestrians are killed in motor accidents, while upwards of 130,000 annually are treated in emergency rooms for non-lethal injuries. Most victims of auto versus pedestrian accident deaths are individuals 70 years and older. By far, the state with the highest number of pedestrian deaths (at 11%) is California, though it only accounts for 5% of national traffic fatalities.
Do Pedestrians Have the Right of Way?
In the state of California, pedestrians have the right of way at intersections – whether the crosswalk is marked or not.
The California Vehicle Code goes on to say that pedestrians are not allowed to crossroads where there are no intersections or cross-walks present, especially when a car is near and/or moving fast enough to hit them. With this said, motorists should not use this as a license to disregard the safety of pedestrians. Rather, motorists always owe pedestrians a duty of care.
What Makes an At-Fault Motorist?
When the motorist breaches the duty of care owed to all pedestrians, and of that breach can be proved to have been a substantial factor in causing the pedestrian’s injury or death, a motorist is liable.
- Refusing to slow down or yield for pedestrians crossing the road
- Driving around a stopped school bus
- Hitting a driver in the break-down lane
- Texting and driving
- Running a stop sign or stoplight
- Driving under the influence
- Not giving pedestrians enough room to get into their parked car
What Makes an At-Fault Pedestrian?
Though At-Fault pedestrian accidents are rarer, they do happen from time to time. More commonly, the motorist will share the fault for these types of accidents, too.
- If a pedestrian darts out into the road, giving the motorist no time to yield or take safe evasive measures
- Crossing against a traffic signal
- Walking along highways, bridges, or causeways where pedestrian access is strictly not allowed.
So, What Do I Do if I Get into a Pedestrian Accident?
The legal intricacies of these types of pedestrian accidents are oftentimes daunting and cause confusion for all involved. We recommend seeking legal advice for your specific situation, and if needed, representation. Liberty & Associates Injury Attorneys will be there for you every step of the way. We are pedestrian accident attorneys who will fight to secure the compensation you’re owed and the peace of mind you rightfully deserve.
Give us a call about your claim today at (866) 808-7700.