Florida Pedestrian Accidents – What You Should Know
According to government statistics, a pedestrian is injured in a traffic accident every 8 minutes. Likewise, one pedestrian is killed every two hours.
When more than a ton of metal and glass on wheels collides with a human being, it can be devastating for both the victim and a family. With the increases in distracted driving (cell phone calls and texting), more pedestrians than ever are in danger of being in a pedestrian accident.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a pedestrian accident, you need to be sure that your medical and financial needs are covered.
Who Is Most Likely To Be Injured?
Pedestrian accidents can happen to anyone, but are most prevalent for the elderly and children. The rate of death for those over the age of 70 who are involved in pedestrian accidents is twice as high as for those under 70.
These accidents can cause traumatic brain injury, severe soft tissue injury, spinal cord injury and severe fractures.
Should You Hire An Attorney After a Pedestrian Accident?
A driver who is distracted, fails to observe a crosswalk or to yield the right of way to pedestrians is negligent. So, a lawsuit filed against a negligent driver may be required to win just compensation for your injuries.
In Florida, vehicles should yield to pedestrians whether the pedestrian whether they are in or outside of a crosswalk. In particular, drivers should use the utmost caution and safety while driving.
This is even more crucial in areas where there are children present. This includes schools, day care centers, parks, and residential neighborhoods.
If you are injured in a pedestrian accident, it is always wise to seek the help of a lawyer. This is especially true if you have had to seek medical treatment.
They will help determine who was at fault, and negotiate your case on your behalf. Likewise, they will represent you in court and keep your mind at ease.
Pedestrian Accidents: Safety Tips
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has released several tips for pedestrians and drivers alike.
Be a predictable pedestrian. Follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals.
Always walk on sidewalks when they are available. If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as you can.
Always stay alert and don’t be distracted by electronic devices that take your eyes and ears off the road.
Cross streets at crosswalks or intersections, where drivers expect you. Look for cars in all directions, including those turning left or right.
If a crosswalk or intersection is not available, locate a well-lit area where you have the best view of traffic. Wait for a gap in traffic that allows enough time to cross safely and watch for traffic as you cross.
Never assume a driver sees you. Make eye contact with drivers as they approach to make sure you are seen.
Wear bright clothing during the day, and wear reflective materials or use a flashlight at night.
Watch for cars entering or exiting driveways, or backing up in parking lots.
Avoid alcohol and drugs when walking. They impair your abilities and your judgment.
Driver Safety Tips to Avoid Pedestrian Accidents
It is also crucial to be aware as a driver. Here are more tips for drivers from the NHTSA.
Look out for pedestrians everywhere, at all times. Safety is a shared responsibility.
Use extra caution when driving in hard-to-see conditions, such as nighttime or bad weather.
Slow down and be prepared to stop when turning or entering a crosswalk to avoid pedestrian accidents.
Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and stop well back from the crosswalk to give other vehicles a chance to see the crossing pedestrians so they can stop too.
Never pass vehicles stopped at a crosswalk. There may be people crossing that you can’t see.
Never drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
Follow the speed limit, especially around people on the street. Follow slower speed limits in school zones and in places where children are present.
Be extra cautious when backing up—pedestrians can move into your path.
Contact Wood, Atter & Wolf, P.A.
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident or are the relative of someone who has been hurt or killed in a pedestrian accident and you need an experienced and aggressive car accident attorney, contact us or call our North Florida personal injury law firm at (904) 355-8888 for a free consultation to see what your case is worth.
Or, click here to schedule a consultation online.