When most people think of auto accidents, a car hitting a pedestrian may not be top of mind. But these types of accidents are more common than most people realize. The potential injuries in pedestrian accidents can be devastating, especially when compared with car versus car accidents. The unprotected human body simply cannot contend with thousands of pounds of steel. Resulting injuries are excruciating and life-changing. They also can be a major expense to survivors. Medical bills start coming in, missed work means no pay check, and unexpected additional costs all tend to quickly pile up.
While the injuries aren’t always reversible, a pedestrian accident doesn’t have to end in financial ruin. Fortunately, the party responsible for your pedestrian accident can be held accountable for the damages they caused. Abels & Annes can help you to recover compensation.
If you or a loved one were injured in a pedestrian accident, contact us to learn about your rights and the options that may be available to you. Our initial case evaluations are always free.
How common are pedestrian accidents?
Each year, there are roughly 137,000 emergency room visits because of pedestrian accidents. Thousands of accident victims die because of their injuries. In 2017, 5,977 pedestrians died because of car accidents. The number of pedestrian fatalities rose to 6,227 in 2018.
Pedestrian deaths also account for 14% of all vehicle crash fatalities. When reviewing fatal pedestrian accident data, we see that 19% of them were committed by hit-and-run drivers, 73% were in urban areas, and 30% occurred at intersections.
Who gets hit by cars?
Pedestrian accidents don't only happen to those who are walking along streets. Some pedestrian accident and fatality victims include joggers, skateboarders, people in wheelchairs, and people walking their dogs, just to name a few. Simply being on foot while near a road is a risk factor for being hit by a vehicle in a pedestrian accident.
Children are also especially susceptible to pedestrian accidents since they spend a significant amount of time playing outside. Although kids in the modern era do not play outside as much as they used to, it is still common in lots of neighborhoods. Playing in the streets, along with a child's decreased sense of danger, contributes to a higher likelihood of children suffering pedestrian accidents.
How can a pedestrian accident attorney help?
Insurance companies realize that most people don’t deal with accident claims on a regular basis. This is especially true for pedestrians who may not own a vehicle. It is normal to be unaware of the ins and outs of filing a claim. Insurance companies often take advantage of this by offering small settlements. They may even completely deny that the driver is at-fault. The right personal injury attorney will work for you to ensure that insurance companies don’t get away with this behavior.
Experienced personal injury attorneys are very good at investigating and evaluating pedestrian accidents. Your attorney can establish the driver’s fault and demonstrate the connection between your injuries and the accident. This is critical in maximizing the amount of compensation you’ll receive.
Your attorney will gather evidence, request files, interview witnesses, and build your claim so that you have the best possible chance when it comes to getting compensation for your damages.
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
There are many causes of pedestrian accidents. Some of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents that we see at Abels & Annes include:
Pedestrians aren’t on a distracted driver’s radar. Drivers who are looking at their phones, engaging with passengers, and otherwise dividing their attention are putting pedestrians at risk. For instance, in 2018, 20% of distracted driving fatalities happened to people who were not inside a vehicle, including bikers and pedestrians.
Running Traffic Signals
Pedestrians rely on stop signs and walk signals to safely cross the street. When drivers don’t adhere to those signals, it places pedestrians in harm’s way. When you are crossing the street, always assume that the driver is not paying attention and does not see the stop sign or traffic signal. One thing that can help to limit your chance of being hit in an intersection is to always make eye contact with the driver before crossing in front of them.
Speeding significantly limits a driver’s ability to react when they see pedestrians. The faster a car is driving before an accident, the higher the risk of death is for a pedestrian. At 23 MPH, the risk of a fatal pedestrian accident is 10%. At 42 MPH, the risk of a pedestrian suffering fatal injuries is five times greater. The saying “Speeding Kills” does not just apply to drivers.
Half of traffic fatalities happen at night. This is mostly because drivers can’t see as clearly when it is dark outside. Additionally, weather conditions like rain and snow can also affect drivers’ ability to see pedestrians.
Drivers on wet and ice-covered roads need more time and space to come to a stop than they would need when roads are dry. If a driver fails to give themselves enough leeway for an immediate stop as needed, they may end up inadvertently injuring a pedestrian.
Compensation for Injuries in a Pedestrian Accident
Any medical expenses that result from a pedestrian accident can be included in your claim. This includes the costs of:
- Medical devices
- Medical appointments
Since some of these medical expenses can last a lifetime, it’s important to have a personal injury attorney who will take a comprehensive look at your case.
You may also collect lost wages for the time you took off work to recover, as well as future wages and opportunities you will lose due to your injuries. For instance, if you become permanently disabled, lost wages for the coming years will be considered while calculating the value of your injury claim.
Since injuries can impact your quality of life, you may also be eligible for pain and suffering compensation. Compensation can be awarded for physical aches and pains, as well as emotional stress in some cases. Your attorney can help to demonstrate the pain, stress, grief, and trauma brought on by your injuries and the negligent actions of the person who caused your injuries.
If you’ve lost a loved one because of a pedestrian accident, you may have cause to file a wrongful death claim. Funeral expenses, financial support, and pain and suffering are some of the damages that survivors can collect in a pedestrian wrongful death case.
Hire a Pedestrian Accident Attorney
At Abels & Annes, we understand the challenges you face after a pedestrian accident. Receiving the compensation you deserve does not have to add to your ongoing list of challenges. Our experienced pedestrian accident attorneys will investigate your accident and aggressively negotiate with the insurance companies so that you can move forward, heal, and get the compensation you need. For a free initial case evaluation, call 312-924-7575 or contact us online.