If you have been struck by a car as a pedestrian, it’s likely that you’ve sustained serious and even life-threatening injuries. You and your family should not have to endure the burden or the responsibility for the damages you have suffered. An Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney can help you seek compensation from the at-fault driver.
We have over 20 years of experience helping injured pedestrians win the financial recovery they deserve after an accident. We can assist you in building a strong injury claim and fight for your rights. To schedule a FREE consultation with the best attorney for you, call us today at (404) 341-6555 or contact us online.
Pedestrian Accidents Versus Car Accidents
Any type of accident in Atlanta can be serious, but pedestrian accidents tend to be especially bad. Someone walking on the road is not protected by a vehicle like drivers. If a vehicle runs into a pedestrian, there is nothing to prevent serious or deadly injuries.
It can also be more difficult to prove fault after a pedestrian accident happens. The at-fault driver might flee the scene or try to blame you. If the accident caused you to lose consciousness, it’s harder to know exactly what happened without eyewitnesses, which might be difficult to get depending on where the accident occurred.
Thankfully, pedestrian accident lawyers know how to gather evidence even if you have a difficult case. It’s best to reach out to an experienced lawyer very soon after the accident. That way, you can know your options and get the help you deserve right away.
Proving Your Pedestrian Accident Claim
There are many different elements that must be proven in a pedestrian accident claim in Atlanta in order for you to get the compensation you deserve. Your attorney must show that the at-fault driver was negligent in some way, that their actions or failure to act caused your injury, and that you have suffered because of this injury.
Attorneys in Atlanta pedestrian accident cases build claims using various methods. Evidence that could be used to help bolster your case includes:
- Traffic or nearby surveillance camera footage
- Eyewitness testimony
- Testimony from accident reconstruction experts
- Hospital and medical records showing your injury
- Testimony about your lifestyle change due to injury (from you, family members, or friends)
- The official police report of the incident
Gathering and preserving all this evidence is important, and it must be done quickly before physical evidence is lost or memories fade. That’s one reason to contact an Atlanta pedestrian collision lawyer as soon as possible.
How the Right of Way Works for Pedestrians in Atlanta
Many drivers are not fully aware of pedestrian rights on Atlanta roads. It’s common for drivers to ignore pedestrians or fail to watch out for them at intersections, even when pedestrians have the right of way instead of cars. Here’s what everyone should understand about pedestrians’ rights and duties.
According to Ga. Code § 40-6-90, pedestrians should obey all traffic-control devices applicable to pedestrians unless there are certain restrictions or privileges pertaining to the situation.
Right of Way in Crosswalks
When a pedestrian has reached at least half of the roadway at a crosswalk or within one lane of the half of the roadway where vehicles are traveling or turning, drivers should stop and not start again until the pedestrian has crossed.
Pedestrians also have a duty to not suddenly walk off of a curb or walk or run into a vehicle’s path when it’s clear that the driver wouldn’t be able to yield.
According to Ga. Code § 40-6-92:
- Pedestrians crossing a road other than at a marked or unmarked crosswalk should yield the right of way to vehicles unless the pedestrian has already entered the road.
- When pedestrians are crossing a road where pedestrian tunnels or crossings are provided, pedestrians who use the road instead of a tunnel or crossing should yield the right of way to all vehicles.
- Pedestrians who are between adjacent intersections with operational traffic-control signals should not cross anywhere except at a marked crosswalk.
- No pedestrian can cross an intersection diagonally unless a traffic-control device authorizes it.
A Driver’s Duty to Pedestrians in Atlanta
Although pedestrians must follow certain traffic rules when crossing roads or intersections, drivers also have an important duty to pedestrians. This is outlined under Ga. Code § 40-6-93, which states that every driver has a duty of care to avoid hitting any pedestrian on a roadway.
Drivers should also provide a warning through honking their horn, if needed, and exercise caution if they see a child or impaired person on the roadway.
Many pedestrian accidents happen because one or more drivers were not being diligent enough to avoid pedestrians on the road. It’s very rare for a pedestrian to be at fault for an accident involving a vehicle. If you were hurt as a pedestrian in Atlanta, a lawyer can help ensure you are not blamed for anything you did not do.
Causes of Pedestrian Deaths in Atlanta
Sadly, many pedestrian accidents result in death. Causes of pedestrian deaths can include:
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Excessive speeding
- Failure to yield to the pedestrian
- Poor road design
- Busy intersections
- Road rage
- Low visibility
To seek compensation for your damages, you’ll need to identify how the accident happened and who caused it. The negligent party in your accident should be held liable for all the resulting damages. If the at-fault party is a driver, you can file a wrongful death claim with their auto insurance company.
Common Damages from Atlanta Pedestrian Accidents
When building your injury claim, you’ll need to know how much your total damages are worth. This includes damages like:
- Medical costs, including doctor and hospital bills, tests, surgeries, prescription medications, and future medical expenses;
- Lost wages from missed work time due to the accident;
- Property damages if any personal items were damaged in the accident; and
- Pain and suffering damages like loss of enjoyment of life, mental anguish, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other emotional damages.
You might be reading this page because you lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident. Our pedestrian accident lawyers in Atlanta are deeply passionate about helping mourning families seek recovery for monetary losses so they don’t have to bear that burden.
We can help you build a wrongful death claim to seek recovery for damages like medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering the loved one experienced, and loss of consortium or companionship.
Additional Damages and Compensation in Atlanta Pedestrian Collisions
Some of the above causes of pedestrian accidents go far and above typical negligence. Drunk driving, road rage, and other acts may be enough to qualify your case for punitive damages in the eyes of the court.
Georgia law requires an “active tortfeasor” for a case to qualify for this additional compensation on top of the usual compensatory damages. This means that the court may decide that the defendant in your Atlanta pedestrian accident claim acted willfully and recklessly with complete disregard for the safety of others, thereby requiring punitive damages.
Punitive damages are rare, but they can be substantial. If your Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney can show that the defendant in your case was negligent beyond reason, your case might be entitled to this extra compensation.
Talk to an Atlanta Pedestrian Accident Lawyer for Free Today
The statute of limitations for a pedestrian accident claim in Atlanta is typically two years from the accident date. This might seem like a long period of time, but the deadline approaches quickly when you’re building a claim. Our pedestrian accident lawyers in Atlanta can help you from the very beginning, ensuring that you don’t miss out on what you’re entitled to receive.
Our personal injury lawyers have over 20 years of experience handling cases throughout Georgia. We can help you sort through your legal options and seek justice for your injuries. To schedule a FREE consultation today, call us at (404) 341-6555 or reach out through our online contact form.