The barometer for measuring whether a pedestrian’s actions caused a car accident is the word “unreasonable”. In other words, pedestrians are almost never the cause of a motor vehicle crash. Yet, when a pedestrian behaves in an unreasonable way and that unreasonable action causes a car accident, the barometer swings toward being a pedestrian-caused incident.
With distraction becoming an epidemic among those behind the wheel, and pedestrians on sidewalks, and in store aisles, it has become commonplace for texting pedestrians to bump into people and things. These and other factors raise a growing list of causes of pedestrian accidents. What ARE those incidents where pedestrians are most commonly at fault for causing a motor vehicle accident?
Incidents Where Pedestrians are Responsible & at Fault
- Distraction is a growing problem. Both pedestrians and drivers alike fight the urge to check their phones for messages, check their GPS for directions, or check their phones to watch the Dow Jones. Technology is only part of the problem, as more people are eating, drinking, talking, and smoking while walking.
- Drunk walking. The same reasons drinking and driving is banned is another reason to consider walking while drinking a risky activity Slower reaction times and poor spatial judgment are combined with a relaxed state of mind to stir up a dangerous soup for drunken pedestrians.
- Ignoring traffic signs and rules. Anytime a person crosses a street or roadway, the propensity to be hit exists. Rules and signs are in place to offer pedestrians the safest possible crossing. Pedestrians who walk astride the law are putting themselves in danger’s way.
- Bus vs. pedestrians. Many urban pedestrian accidents involve buses. With people onboarding and leaving buses in busy streets, often other traffic does not witness the person leaving the bus until it is sadly, too late.
- Pedestrians wearing dark nighttime colors. Walking after dark is difficult as it is a challenge for the walker to see where he or she is going. The worst part of darkness for the pedestrian though, is being seen or not being seen, as it were. Pedestrians walking in the dark in dark clothing are a collision waiting to happen. If you must walk at night, white or reflective clothing is critical.
Irresponsible or negligent pedestrians can be as dangerous as an impaired driver for wreaking havoc with motorists. One problem that emerges from pedestrians behaving badly is a panicked driver who is fearful of hitting the person. Drivers often cannot stop or control their cars in a split second and they make poor driving decisions. At this juncture, the driver has one of several circumstances to deal with. The driver either hits the pedestrian and then is forced to manage the situation and prove he or she was driving lawfully. Or the driver slams his foot on the brake causing his or his passenger’s to be injured. Or the driver steers away from the pedestrian and ends up hitting other vehicles, bicycles, structures, or other people.
If you have been involved in a car accident where a pedestrian’s actions caused or contributed to the accident, you need a pedestrian accident attorney to help guide your next steps. If you were the driver, the pedestrian, or a passenger, you may be eligible for medical damages if you were injured or lost wages if you were unable to work for any reason afterwards. The best thing for you is to avoid engaging in any blaming game with the others involved. Your pedestrian accident attorney can help you sort out all the facts and decide the best approach to dealing with your role.
Petersen Johnson has been helping people with pedestrian accidents for more than 20 years. When your situation calls for expertise and an attorney who knows the courts and the laws around pedestrian accidents, we can help. Call today to schedule your consultation. Preserve your rights and call today.