Pedestrian accidents happen due to a multitude of reasons. Many believe that only the driver can be at fault for an accident involving a pedestrian. The truth is that both the driver and the pedestrian can be responsible for an accident happening.
Accidents involving pedestrians can result in wrongful death or severe injury. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that in 2017 there were 5,977 pedestrian fatalities and an additional 137,000 pedestrians treated for non-fatal injuries in emergency rooms. Pedestrian accidents are serious. Regardless if you are driving on the highway or walking down the street, those who share the road must have a duty of care for others.
If you were involved in a car accident as a pedestrian or a driver, contact us today to learn how our Atlanta car accident lawyers can help you. We are well versed in personal injury and accident law at the federal, state, and local levels. With years of experience, we are ready to help you get the compensation you deserve. Call us for a free consultation at (404) 341-6555.
Why Pedestrian Accidents Happen
When a pedestrian accident happens, it may seem confusing how it happened. Here is a breakdown of the various reasons why they occur.
When a person drives under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol, they become severely impaired. Driving requires focus and attention, which get inhibited when drunk, high, or tired. DUIs are the most common reason why pedestrian accidents occur. Drivers get taught before they even obtain their license that DUIs are illegal and to never operate a vehicle after drinking. A driver can get their license revoked and face jail time for a DUI.
This may also seem shocking, but pedestrians can get hit by a sober driver when they are drunk. Drunk pedestrians can stumble onto the road to oncoming traffic and get hit by a car, truck, or motorcycle. If a driver swerves and crashes trying to avoid a drunk pedestrian, that pedestrian can be held liable for the accident. The CDC states that 47% of all pedestrian accidents in the United States happen because either the driver or the pedestrian is drunk. Many fatal crashes have alcohol involved. Always drink responsibly and never get behind the wheel or walk near traffic while intoxicated.
Speeding is one of the most common causes of accidents in general on the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), speeding was involved in roughly one-third of all car accident fatalities in the United States for the past two decades. People speed for a multitude of reasons. The anonymity of people on the road encourages risky and aggressive driving behaviors.
When vehicles speed, the driver has less control over their vehicle. They may not allow themselves proper distance to brake or slow down properly because they close the distance so quickly. The faster a driver goes, the less time they have to react to road hazards. This puts pedestrians at an increased risk of an accident.
Jaywalking is an informal term that refers to when a pedestrian does not use designated crosswalks to cross the street. While this is not illegal, it still causes pedestrian accidents to happen. Pedestrians need to use crosswalks when they are available. It is not worth the risk of getting hit just to cross the street. Crosswalks have crossing signals and traffic lights to regulate and protect pedestrians properly.
Just because jaywalking is not illegal in Georgia does not mean that pedestrians always get a free pass. Pedestrians cannot merely just dart onto the road and expect cars to avoid them reasonably. Pedestrians may only jaywalk after yielding to oncoming traffic. Once they hit the road when the conditions are safe, the driver now has to ensure they yield to them.
Distracted Driving and Walking
Drivers getting distracted on the road has become a massive issue in recent years. Ever since smartphones have become the new standard, texting and driving have negatively impacted the safety of drivers. Many studies have proven that using your phone while driving greatly increases your chances of an accident. When a driver uses their phone, eats food, or grooms themselves while driving, they put themselves and others at risk. Drivers cannot properly react to changing road conditions, such as a stop sign or a pedestrian crossing, while distracted.
Pedestrians can also get distracted by their phones. Texting and walking or listening to music through earphones can reduce awareness of potential hazards. Pedestrians can unknowingly disobey crosswalk signals, fail to hear or see cars on the road, and walk into oncoming traffic.
Get Legal Help for Pedestrian Accidents Today
If an accident you were involved in was caused by negligence, you can pursue financial compensation for your injuries. Drivers and pedestrians need to share the road carefully. Simple things like enjoying alcohol on a night out with friends or using your phone can lead to devastating consequences that can change your life forever.
Our law office has Atlanta car accident lawyers ready to assist you. We never charge upfront for our services. If we cannot get you compensation for your accident, you do not have to pay us. There is a two-year statute of limitations to file a claim for your accident. Do not delay and call us today. We offer a free consultation to evaluate your case and let you know about all your options. Our phone number is (404) 341-6555.