Unfortunately, if a pedestrian is hit by a car they often sustain serious injuries. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association estimates that 5,000 pedestrians are killed in car accidents each year. Injuries to pedestrians total more than 78,000. If you have been hit by a car and sustained injuries because of someone else's negligence you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries.
What would you do if you were hit by a car?
There are several things you should do immediately.
- Evaluate your injuries.
- Seek immediate medical attention for injuries.
- If you are the injured party gather all of the driver's information. This includes all insurance and identification, names and addresses of drivers, driver's license numbers, and the cause of accident.
- Notify the police and file a police report. Get a copy of the police report and name and badge numbers of the police who responded to the scene. Keep all information for your records.
- ***Leaving the scene of a pedestrian accident is considered a criminal offense****
Causes of Pedestrian Injuries and Accidents
There are many causes of pedestrian accidents. A few of the causes can be due to pedestrian mistakes and other accidents are caused by driver error.
Common Pedestrian Mistakes
- Not following traffic signals
- Darting into traffic
- Walking on a highway that does not allow pedestrians
Common Driver Mistakes
- Driving too fast
- Performing distracting actions while driving (cellphone, radio, eating, makeup, etc.)
- Not obeying traffic signs
- Drunk Driving
Pedestrian Accidents on a Person's Property
A pedestrian also could be injured on a person's property. This could include slips and falls, fires, explosions, dangerous equipment and security infractions on the premises of a business. An owner of a business has the responsibility to exercise reasonable care to ensure that customers are safe on their property. This responsibility includes warning people of potential hazards, protecting people on the property and reducing and eliminating all known hazards. Failure to perform these duties can be considered negligence.
In order to prove negligence you have to prove that the owner caused the dangerous condition, knew about it and did not fix it or that the dangerous environment had existed long enough that the owner should have known about it and corrected it prior to an accident occurring. If you have been injured on premises of a business contact a personal injury attorney to evaluate your personal injury claim.
Do I have A Case for my Pedestrian Accident?
If you have been hit by a car and the cause of the accident is due to someone else's negligence or if their negligence contributed to your injuries, you may have cause to file a personal injury claim. If it is determined that the defendant is responsible for your injuries then they may be required to pay for your personal injuries. To win a personal injury claim you have to establish negligence on the part of the defendant. Negligence is conduct that does not meet the behavior required from a reasonable person to protect others from harm. People who drive must exercise "reasonable care". If they fail to do this and cause an injury this could be considered negligence. You must also prove that the actions of the plaintiff or his failure to act caused the accident and your resulting injuries.
In a pedestrian accident there may be multiple parties responsible for the accident. The pedestrian is also responsible to exercise reasonable care. If there behavior is determined to have contributed to their injuries (ex. darting into traffic) then this is considered contributory negligence and will be factored into the award given. It is important to consult with a personal injury attorney experienced in pedestrian accidents to evaluate the accident and determine the validity of your personal injury case.Do I Need to Hire A Pedestrian Accident Attorney?
If you have been seriously injured in a vehicular accident or if you have a serious injury from an accident on a business property and are unsure of the long term costs of your injuries it is important to contact a personal injury attorney. A personal injury attorney can help evaluate your case, hire experts, and negotiate a fair settlement for your injuries. If your case goes to trial a personal injury attorney is an expert in arguing pedestrian accident cases.How is My Pedestrian Injury Attorney Paid?
Pedestrian injury attorneys are paid on a "contingency fee" basis. This means they are not paid until you receive your settlement. After you win your personal injury case they are paid a percentage of your settlement amount.