A small group of students were reportedly hit by a car as they crossed the road. The accident happened at about 6:30 am. at Buffalo Speedway and West Bellfort in southwest Houston. According to reports, a driver was turning into the northbound lanes of Buffalo Speedway when a group of students crossing the road were hit. The students attend nearby Emery/Weiner Private School.
The driver stopped at the scene and paramedics responded to the early morning crash. They treated some students who were said to have only minor injuries. Police officers were on the scene and were investigating the accident and talking to the driver.
Accidents involving pedestrians have been on the rise over the last several years. According to statistics released by the Texas Department of Transportation, TxDOT, there were 5,767 total accidents involving pedestrians in Texas in 2017. Of that number there were 614 fatalities reported with more than 1,100 suspected serious injuries.
When a vehicle strikes a pedestrian, there are likely to be severe injuries, even if the vehicle is traveling at a slow rate of speed. When a vehicle is traveling at a speed of more than 35 mph, the risk of fatal injuries increases significantly. Some serious injuries may include broken bones, neck and back injuries, and head trauma. In some cases, injuries may require extensive treatment and recovery time and sometimes an injury is disabling.
Many people think that pedestrians always have the right-of-way, however, that is not necessarily true. There are specific instances in which motorists must stop for pedestrians. The Texas Transportation Code provides details of pedestrian right-of-way. In general, vehicles must yield when pedestrians are in a designated crosswalk with a valid walk sign illuminated.
Vehicles have a duty to watch for pedestrians who enter the roadway and are required to slow down or stop in order to prevent an accident. Pedestrians who are walking on sidewalks automatically have the right-of-way because these areas are meant specifically for foot traffic.
However, drivers and pedestrians must both take safety precautions in areas where they need to share the roadway. The laws are based on common sense principles that require drivers to watch carefully for pedestrians, even if they are in undesignated areas. Drivers have an obligation to avoid hitting a pedestrian by taking every possible evasive measure. In this case, we do not know the specifics of whether the children were crossing in a crosswalk or whether they had a walk sign. However, the driver should have taken care to watch for pedestrians before trying to make a turn.
If you were seriously injured in a pedestrian accident, we can help. Our legal team will fight for your rights and will work to get you the compensation you deserve for your damages and injuries.
Contact our Houston personal injury law office today at Baumgartner Law Firm to discuss the details of your case with a free consultation.
Texas Transportation Code https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/TN/htm/TN.552.htm