As in any large metropolitan city, pedestrians walking or running in and around St. Louis are at a very high risk of getting seriously injured or killed when hit by a motor vehicle. The human body was never intended to be any kind of a match in a fight against a car, and many victims of pedestrian accidents can tell you about the very serious medical problems accidents can cause. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports over 75,000 pedestrian injuries and over 5,000 deaths in accidents with cars, trucks, and other motor vehicles every year; that works out to more than 200 injuries and more than 13 deaths every day!
If you were hit by someone driving a car, you have a right to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver that hit you. If you are considering this course of action, you may want to consider discussing your case in detail with one of the experienced attorneys at Walton Telken; call them toll free at (844) 307-7349. During your scheduled appointment, you can voice your concerns and get answer to your questions.
Pedestrian Accident Injuries
Pedestrians can sustain incredibly serious injuries any time they are hit by a motor vehicle. The severity of the injuries may depend on multiple factors, including how fast the car was traveling (while even slow-moving cars can cause pedestrian fatalities, when cars travel faster than 30 m.p.h., the pedestrians they hit will most assuredly have some serious injuries) and where the car hit the person’s body. Getting hit by a car can cause a body to be thrown violently into the air, which can compound injuries when the person falls on the ground. Common injuries that result when cars hit pedestrians include but are not limited to the following:
- Broken or fractured bones
- Bruises and lacerations
- Crush injuries, including accidental amputations
- Head, neck, and spine injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
These injuries can heal quickly, they can take months or years to heal, or the person may never recover. Incidents of spinal and traumatic brain injuries can severely alter a person’s lifestyle, which in turn takes a toll on the person’s quality of life. Some injuries may incapacitate a person from doing normal, everyday things, such as performing the job they were trained to do. For these reasons, it’s of the utmost importance that those individuals impacted by a pedestrian accident seek the compensation to which they are entitled.
Negligent Drivers Can Cause Pedestrian Accidents
On any busy St. Louis city street, you might see dozens of pedestrians running or walking on the side of the road or on the sidewalk. These individuals sometimes come precariously close to fast moving vehicles on the roads, and when drivers fail to pay attention or when they get distracted even for a second, their negligence may have huge implications. Drivers have a responsibility to drive in a way that causes no undue risk of harm or injury to others surrounding them; this includes other drivers and pedestrians. Drivers can exhibit negligence and cause a pedestrian accident in any of the following ways:
- Driving too fast for the road and/or conditions, such as weather
- Driving while distracted
- Not obeying posted signs
- Driving drunk
- Failure to obey regular traffic laws
Drivers are sometimes wont to blame the victim rather than accept their own personal responsibility; they claim that pedestrians who run or dart into the roadway at unexpected times and places cause accidents, that their lack of caution leads to their own injuries and deaths. This level of carelessness may lead insurance companies and juries to find the pedestrian culpable to some extent. It’s commonly called “comparative fault” or “contributory negligence,” which means that while the driver did hit the pedestrian, the pedestrian contributed to the accident, and also holds some responsibility. Certainly, pedestrians should always practice a great deal of caution, especially on busy roads; however, drivers should practice that same caution when they realize that pedestrians sometimes require the use of the same roads that cars use.
Where And When Pedestrian Accidents Happen
The majority of pedestrian accidents occur after dark (specifically after 6 p.m. but before midnight) on roads that don’t have crosswalks; just under half of them happened on the weekend. In just less than 50 percent of pedestrian injury accidents, one or both of the parties had recently consumed alcohol. A relatively smaller number of pedestrians were victims of hit and run drivers.
Knowing the risks and statistics can make it easier to stay safe. Please read through the following tips for staying safe when walking or running near or on roadways:
- Wear light-colored clothing when walking at dusk, dawn, and in the dark; you can also increase your visibility by carrying a flashlight and staying in well-lit areas as much as possible.
- Whenever possible, use crosswalks when crossing the street.
- Assume the driver doesn’t see you, and won’t stop at the stop sign or light for you. Drivers are supposed to drive defensively; you should walk defensively.
- Practice extreme caution at the most dangerous times (6 p.m. to midnight, plus weekends and holidays).
Contact The Experienced St. Louis, MO Pedestrian Accident Attorneys at Walton Telken Today
As a victim in a pedestrian accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation (including your medical costs, any lost income, and pain and suffering) as well as punitive damages. Any pedestrian who has been involved in an accident with a driver should discuss their case with an attorney experienced with personal injury lawsuits. The attorney will listen to your story, answer all of your questions, and together you can work to find the path you would most like to take in order to seek compensation for your injuries. You have the right to walk or run without expecting a negligent driver to hit you, so you should exercise your right to hold that driver responsible for their actions that caused your injuries. Call to talk to an attorney with Walton Telken today toll free at (844) 307-7349; if you are unable to do so, we will gladly come to you to discuss the details of your case in person.