Michael Steinger Pedestrian Accident FAQ Interview

What Is A Pedestrian Accident

According to State Traffic Control Law, a pedestrian is defined as any person afoot that is required to obey the instructions of any traffic control device or police officer. A pedestrian includes people on foot, or on bicycles, or on non-motorized vehicles, and they are required by law to use a sidewalk when provided, and they are not permitted to walk on a paved road. And if there is no sidewalk provided, a pedestrian is required to walk only on the shoulder of the left side of the road, facing traffic, approaching vehicles or oncoming vehicles from the opposite direction.

Commonly, on roadways, pedestrians and bicyclists are all too often hit by cars, or trucks, or taxis, or other moving vehicles, and usually that’s when they’re jogging, or skateboarding, or roller skating, or even just walking on a sidewalk, or while crossing a street, or crossing a highway.

And those accidents with pedestrians tend to result in potentially serious or catastrophic injuries – a lot involving broken bones, or head injuries, or concussions, and sometimes even death. However, a lot of these pedestrian accidents can be prevented, and they’re usually caused by drivers who are not paying attention, or who are distracted, or talking, or texting on a cell phone, or drinking. Normally, a pedestrian is defined within your own insurance policy, or car insurance policy, and it tends to be an individual who is walking, or standing, or sitting down, riding a bicycle, a driver or a passenger of a scooter or a moped, someone on a skateboard or Rollerblades, and that pretty much defines what is a pedestrian and types of pedestrian accidents.

What Is The Chance Of A Pedestrian Surviving An Accident At 40 Mph

The chance of a pedestrian surviving an accident at 40 mph is very slim. Only about 10 percent of those hit at a speed of 40 mph or higher will survive. Chances of survival increases drastically the slower a vehicle is traveling. For example, the chance of survival of a pedestrian hit at the speed of 30 mph goes up approximately 50 percent. So, it all depends upon the speed that the vehicle is traveling that strikes the pedestrian, but 40 mph, or greater, is a very small chance of survival.

 

What Should Someone Do After A Pedestrian Accident

After a pedestrian accident occurs, assuming the injuries are not too severe, you should immediately call 9-1-1, make a report, and seek medical treatment. If the injuries are severe, hopefully, someone else will be calling 9-1-1, or someone else will report the accident, and then you will be taken immediately to a hospital for medical treatment. After that, if you’ve been injured and it was not your fault in a pedestrian accident, you can call Steinger, Greene & Feiner so that we can assist you, from handling the claim from beginning to end.

When You Say Handling A Claim From Beginning To End What Does That Entail

Our office normally handles cases when someone is found not to be at fault in an accident, and if it’s a pedestrian accident, if the pedestrian was determined not to be at fault. From the time they call us, we handle communications with the insurance company. We handle collection of all the medical records, presentation of the individual’s claim, from their outstanding medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and we handle the case from the time it comes in until we’re able to either reach a resolution and a settlement with the insurance company, or the at-fault party’s insurance company, and if that is not possible, then we will take the case to trial and have a jury award a fair and reasonable amount for the injuries.

 

When Do Most Pedestrian Accidents Happen

Well, pedestrians are at risk for serious injuries anytime they are involved in an accident, but there are studies that show that some demographics are more likely to be involved in pedestrian crashes than others. In the U.S., a pedestrian is killed every two hours from an accident. Males account for 69 percent of the pedestrian fatalities in the U.S. Over two-thirds of pedestrian crashes or pedestrian accidents occur at night. One out of five pedestrians that are killed in an accident are over 65. Young pedestrians, meaning those under 16, are more likely to be killed between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., and November and December are the deadliest months for pedestrians.

 

 

When Is A Pedestrian At Fault For A Car Accident

Well, at crosswalks and intersections, there’s kind of an interplay between drivers and pedestrians that, obviously, has a lot of risk, especially in densely populated environments or on busy downtown streets. Pedestrians have the right-of-way in most situations, but they also have certain traffic-related laws that have been put in place that they need to adhere to for their own protection.

Pedestrian-car accidents are almost always governed by a legal concept called “negligence,” which is basically just a fancy term for carelessness, and a driver or a pedestrian is deemed negligent or responsible for the accident when his or her failure to act with reasonable care causes or plays a part in an accident, and someone suffers an injury or damages. So, when you’re trying to establish after a car-pedestrian accident who is negligent, you normally look to a police report that is filed with a local law enforcement officer who responded to the accident.

The report usually includes the officer’s conclusions about who’s at fault. It’ll include witnesses’ names, statements that they may have given about the accident and how it occurred. It’ll detail whether the pedestrian was in a crosswalk, or did the driver run a stop sign, or disobey some sort of traffic signage? It’ll tell you if, for instance, a pedestrian darted out from between parked cars, instead of crossing at an intersection.

So, when we’re looking to determine fault for a pedestrian accident, we start with the police report. We examine what’s contained in it. We look toward the witnesses and any witness statements that may be obtained. At some points in time, there may be video cameras or surveillance cameras that are located at or near a scene that may contain an actual video of the accident. And so, we look to all of these different sources to help to determine who is at fault for the pedestrian accident.

Where Do Most Child Pedestrian Accidents Happen

Well, as most child pedestrian accidents occur – that was children being those younger than 16 – are likely to occur between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Obviously, it’s a time when kids are out of school, and so they’re out and playing, so if they’re near, and they’re playing near roadways, near parks, or other places, or schools where children normally would be playing after school, or at after-school-related activities, or walking home – those are common places where a child pedestrian accident would happen.

Who Is At Fault In A Pedestrian Accident

Trying to determine who’s at fault in a pedestrian accident depends on the facts of the particular incident. As with most other personal injury claims, it is governed by the law of negligence to determine who caused the accident. Basically, every person is expected to exercise a reasonable level of care under a given set of circumstances. So, for example, drivers and pedestrians are expected to obey traffic laws and the rules of the road when using streets, or highways, or crosswalks.

So, if Person A fails to act with reasonable care and ends up causing harm to Person B, the law considers Person A the negligent person, regardless of whether they were driving or they were walking. And so, if a pedestrian fails to exercise reasonable care in some way and it causes an accident, the pedestrian may be at fault as well. For example, if a pedestrian runs out between parked cars and into the path of an oncoming vehicle, and the driver of the vehicle cannot avoid hitting the pedestrian, the pedestrian will probably be considered at fault for the accident.

Similarly, if the driver of the vehicle had sufficient time or enough time to take evasive measures and failed to do so, they may be responsible for the accident. And so, ultimately, determining the negligence or the fault really depends on the particular circumstances. Obviously, a driver has a legal duty to know the roadway around them and to take reasonable care to avoid a pedestrian, whether that’s a person walking, or a bicyclist and, particularly, there is a greater duty of care around young children, who tend not to be predictable around vehicles.

When you’re looking at negligence of a pedestrian, you’re looking at a few common mistakes that either a driver or a pedestrian would make that may place them at fault for an accident. Common mistakes by pedestrians tend to be crossing a street on a Don’t Walk signal, walking or running into the flow of traffic, not using crosswalks, sprinting out in front of a car.

And a driver is usually considered negligent, and pedestrian accidents occur when they’re preoccupied for some reason, whether it’s on a cell phone, or some other reason, and failing to pay attention, or they’re not observing the speed limit, or a driver fails to yield the right-of-way at a crosswalk, or a driver fails to use a turn signal, or they fail to stop at a light or a stop sign, or as, in many cases, where they are driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Who is at fault in a crosswalk accident?

Determining who is at fault in a crosswalk accident, you usually look toward a statute. Statutes in most states say that a pedestrian facing a green light can cross the street or the roadway, unless the green signal is a turn arrow, and they can do that as long as they remain within any marked crosswalk, or if there are no marked crosswalks, they are still allowed to cross a street or roadway as long as they are facing a green light.

And all motor vehicles are required to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians that are lawfully within that intersection or crosswalk. If a light is yellow or red, a pedestrian is not supposed to enter a crosswalk or roadway unless, obviously, they have some other proper pedestrian crossing signal. If, for instance, you enter a crosswalk or roadway improperly, other vehicles/cars still have a responsibility to avoid hitting you, and so, there are statutes throughout the country that say, even when a pedestrian enters a crosswalk or tries to cross a street improperly, every driver should exercise due care to avoid colliding with them, and give some type of warning, if it’s possible, whether it’s beeping their horn or some other type of warning, if they have the ability to do that.

Ultimately, a driver of a motor vehicle tends to be in a better position to avoid an accident, and so, the law still places some responsibility on a driver to be able to stop if they can, or to be aware of their surroundings, and to take precautionary measures, if possible.

 

What Should You Do After A Crosswalk Accident

After a crosswalk accident, depending on the extent of the injury, you should call 9-1-1. You should report the accident to a local police department. You need to receive medical treatment if the injuries in a crosswalk accident are extremely significant. Obviously, you need to be taken to a hospital, and then seek appropriate medical care. And after you’ve sought medical care for a crosswalk accident, you should contact a lawyer so you can learn what your rights are, and the responsibilities of the at-fault driver in that accident.

How Do You Claim Insurance For A Crosswalk Accident

A crosswalk accident, as insurance is concerned, is relatively similar to an automobile accident. Depending on what state you’re from, you may be covered with personal injury protection insurance under your own automobile policy. Those states that have no-fault insurance coverage will provide that coverage if you are hit by a motor vehicle as a pedestrian or a bicyclist. If you’re in states that do not have no-fault coverage, you are entitled to collect for your damages from the at-fault party, and the at-fault party’s insurance company.

If you have health insurance, obviously, you’re able to receive medical treatment through your own health insurance, and then you’ll be able to recover those monies or costs of that in bringing your claim against the at-fault party. Obviously, when making a claim for injuries or damages in a crosswalk accident or any type of pedestrian accident, as a plaintiff bringing a claim, you are entitled to recover for your medical bills in the past and in the future. You are entitled to recover for your wages/your earnings in the past or in the future, as well as for pain, suffering, mental anguish, or inconvenience caused from a pedestrian or a crosswalk accident.

 

How do you report a crosswalk accident?

If you have been involved in a crosswalk accident or a pedestrian accident, you would call 9-1-1 to report the accident. If it is a significant injury and to where you are unable to communicate or unable to make that call, hopefully, someone else, a bystander or some other witness, would call 9-1-1 to be able to report it. If you are able to, you can also contact the local police department in your area, to be able to report the accident. Additionally, you need to contact your own automobile insurance carrier to report that the accident occurred.

Many times, there is automobile insurance under your own policy that may help to pay for your medical bills or your pain and suffering, as well as the policy from the at-fault party.

Contact a Florida Personal Injury Lawyer Today

At Steinger, Greene and Feiner, our experienced personal injury lawyers have the strong legal backgrounds and extensive legal knowledge that you need to have the best chance of a successful personal injury claim. Whether you are negotiating a settlement outside of court or proving your claim to a jury, you can trust us to use our legal skills to help you get the best outcome possible.
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