Have you or a loved one been injured by a motor vehicle as a pedestrian? You are no doubt facing immense emotional and physical pain, and you may not know where to turn. We are here to help you recover the compensation you deserve so that you can focus on healing and get back to normalcy.
At Steinger, Green, & Feiner, we have extensive experience in fighting for the rights of pedestrian victims. We understand what the client goes through because we have helped many clients already receive medical care and a fair settlement to help them recuperate.
If you have suffered a pedestrian accident in Nashville, we understand your emotional and physical distress and are here to help you through the process of recovering compensation. You can contact us for a free consultation with one of our attorneys at (615) 590-3106. You can also complete our simple online form on this page to schedule a free consultation. We look forward to assisting you.
Common Injuries After a Pedestrian Accident in Nashville
According to the Center for Disease Control, a pedestrian is killed every two hours in the United States and 150,000 people are injured. Any impact from a vehicle going above fifteen miles per hour causes injury. Due to this, virtually all pedestrian accidents result in an injury. The most common ages that are affected include males five to nine years old and individuals over 65. An individual’s low socioeconomic status also increases the rate of being a victim of a pedestrian accident.
The head, spine, chest, abdomen, and extremities all have the potential to become injured if a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle. Head trauma can be extremely dangerous. Even a minor concussion can cause negative side effects for months or years after the accident. Included with brain injuries are spinal cord injuries. This is another common injury sustained during a pedestrian accident. The spinal cord communicates between the brain and the body, damage to this area of the body can be debilitating.
In addition to broken bones and lacerations (deep cuts which may or may not require stitches), another common area of injury is the pelvic bone. There are four kinds of pelvic injuries:
- “Open Book”: the pelvic bone opens from the front like a book
- “Vertical Shear”: Half of the pelvis shifts up, away from the other half
- “Lateral Compression”: Half of the pelvis shifts forward or backward, away from the other side, similar to a vertical shear
- Hip Fractures: While not technically part of the pelvic bone, it involves the socket on the pelvic bone that the femur fits into. When the femur fractures it is considered a hip fracture.
Lastly, the emotional trauma that occurs as a result of a pedestrian hit by a vehicle is very common. Regardless of how improbable most individuals think being hit by a car is, when it does occur it can be distressing and traumatic. This is perfectly understandable, and we want to do everything we can to make the process of filing a personal injury claim easier on you.
Types of Compensation You May Recover After Your Accident
There are two types of awards (damages) an injured party can ask for in their settlement. First, special damages, also known as economic damages, include anything that you have spent in relation to the accident or money you have lost due to the injury. Anything that can be easily calculated is considered special damages. These damages include:
- Lost Wages
- Medical Bills
- Cost of care at home due to injury
- Loss of irreplaceable items
- Cost of gas to and from medical appointments
- Cost of equipping your home to accommodate your injury
- Loss of earning capacity
- Cost of medical equipment needed
- Cost of Childcare
- Cost of Medical Transport
- Canceled vacation plans due to injury
The other type of damage you can claim in your personal injury suit is called general damages. These are damages that are not easy to calculate or are difficult to estimate a price. Pain and suffering is the overarching label for the types of situations found in this category. Pain and suffering is a very vague label, included in this category are examples below.
- Loss of previous hobbies
- Loss of companionship
- Marital discord
- Loss of time with children/unable to be an active parent
- Quality of life decrease
- Duration of the pain from the injury
- Duration and/or permanent mental health issues
- Required change of profession
These examples also must be evaluated based on several factors. These factors include length of pain and suffering, severity of the injury and associated suffering, comparing the injured party’s lifestyle before and after the accident, the amount of medical intervention, including medication, needed to reduce the pain, and if the injured party had any pre-existing conditions that became exacerbated.
Steps to Take After Your Pedestrian Accident
If you are ever a victim of a pedestrian accident, or have already experienced one, the following steps are very important in order to preserve your rights, build your case, ensure a fair settlement, and give your Nashville pedestrian accident lawyer all the facts to present to the liable party.
Immediately after an accident it is very important to make sure you are safe. If you are under a car, or in traffic lanes, make sure you are brought to safety. If you are too injured to move, ask for help and call, or have a bystander call, an ambulance immediately. Make sure the police are also notified of the accident.
If you are well enough to gather evidence and information, the following is highly recommended: Write down the car license plate, driver’s license number, address, and phone number. If you can get a copy of the driver’s license using a camera that would be optimal. You also want to make sure you get all the car insurance information and a picture of their card or insurance document as well.
Take as many pictures of the scene as possible. You cannot take too many photographs; these photos will preserve the scene as it occurred on the day of your accident. No other piece of evidence accomplishes that. Take photos from all different point of views, including injuries and any damage to the vehicle that hit you. Through photographs, you are also able to capture the time of day, road conditions, and surrounding environment that can support your case.
Call the police to make sure a police report is made; ask for an ambulance, and to be transported to the hospital to be evaluated. Even if you don’t feel injured, it can take up to forty-eight hours for injuries to set in and hurt. It is important that a doctor release you rather than going home and suffering. If you have already been in an accident, it is never too late to be evaluated. Starting a medical record of your injury is essential.
As soon as you have been medically evaluated, you need to contact a pedestrian accident lawyer in Nashville. Your attorney will handle the entire case with care and importance, while you focus on treating your injuries and adjusting to life after your accident.
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
There are seven common causes of pedestrian accidents. In most of the cases our Nashville pedestrian accident lawyers have handled, the negligent party caused an accident due to the following reasons:
- Distracted Driving: Usually a cell phone is being used, the driver looks away to grab an item from the other seat, or the driver is updating their GPS. As a result, the driver fails to see the pedestrian and collides with them.
- Speeding: As a pedestrian is crossing the street, a car speeds through a red light and fails to yield to the pedestrian. Similarly, a driver could be speeding, and due to Nashville’s lack of sidewalks in many areas, could hit a pedestrian crossing the street. Because of the high speed, the driver could not slow in time.
- Drunk Driving: This unfortunately speaks for itself. No matter the incident, impaired drivers are a danger to pedestrians.
- Failing to Stop: If a car is trying to turn right, their head is usually over their left shoulder, looking for oncoming cars. If a pedestrian is on the right of the driver’s car and is trying to cross the street, and the driver decides to roll through the red light, the pedestrian will most likely be hit. Anytime a driver fails to stop at a designated area, the risk of hitting a pedestrian increases, especially during peak driving time.
- Weather: Weather can be a huge contributing factor if the driver of the vehicle is not practicing caution in fog, rain, snow, or any weather condition that affects driving.
- Left Turns: If a pedestrian is crossing the street and opposing traffic decides to turn left, fails to notice the pedestrian, and is speeding or running a red light, it is possible the car will hit the pedestrian.
- Backing Up: A very common cause of pedestrian accidents occurs when backing up in a parking lot. In fact, parking lots are one of the most dangerous areas for cars due to the high number of accidents. Backing up is something that should be done slowly and cautiously; unfortunately, many drivers rely solely on their rearview mirror instead of turning their head to look as well.
How Common are Pedestrian Accidents in Nashville?
While pedestrians have the right of way under Tennessee law, Nashville is in the top twenty-five most dangerous cities for pedestrians in the state. A pedestrian is killed every twenty-one days in Nashville, and the percentage is rising each year. Seventy-three percent of pedestrian accidents occur at night and occur on three main roads (highways) in Nashville. Gallatin Pike has had ten deaths over the last six years, Old Hickory Blvd has seen nine, and Murfreesboro had seven pedestrians lose their lives.
The major issues affecting these roads and Nashville’s pedestrian injury and death rate in general, are the lack of sidewalks throughout the city, crumbling concrete where sidewalks should be, and long blocks of roads without crosswalks.
Due to the issue of pedestrian safety, many campaigns, nonprofits, and committees formed to address the problem. The Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee was created and declared Nashville as a bicycle and pedestrian-friendly city enacting regulations pertaining to safety. “Share the Road” campaign was started to bring awareness to the number of pedestrian deaths and to help decrease that number. Walk Bike Nashville began a campaign called “Look for Me” to increase pedestrian safety.
Lastly, Nashville revealed recently that they are investing thirty million dollars to build sidewalks on major highways, where eighty percent of fatalities occur.
Why You Should Hire a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Right Away
A Nashville pedestrian accident lawyer specializes in pedestrian issues in the city and surrounding area. They know local and state law as well as procedures in local courts. With vast experience in representing pedestrian accident victims, our firm helps you when you need it most. We’ll take care of contacting the car insurance provider, keeping the insurance company up to date on your prognosis, completing necessary forms and steps to preserve your right to a trial, organizing and compiling discovery, and advocating on your behalf in order to get you the best settlement possible.
Contact us for a complimentary consultation to discuss your options with a caring and professional Nashville pedestrian accident lawyer at (615) 590-3106. You can also complete our simple online form this page, and our team will reach out to you shortly.