What Should I do if I was Hurt in a Pedestrian Accident?
Written by Greg on March 30, 2020
Every year, thousands of pedestrians are killed, and many more are injured in vehicle accidents across the country. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, over 6,000 pedestrians were killed in 2018, and pedestrian deaths are at the highest level since 1990. While many laws and safety features have made vehicle travel safer over the years, the number of pedestrians hit by cars is on the rise. Texas is among one the five states that account for about half of the pedestrian fatalities in the United States.
What Causes Pedestrian Accidents?
There are many reasons that cars hit pedestrians. Some of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents include:
- Failure to look for people in crosswalks
- Failure to stop at a light or stop sign
- Making a turn without checking
- Distracted driving
- Driving while impaired
People are driving large vehicles such as SUVs that can make it more difficult to see pedestrians. These larger vehicles are more massive, and if they hit a person, the resulting injuries are much more likely to be severe. Distracted driving due to increased use in cell phones for texting has also contributed to the increase in crashes.
Injuries Caused by Pedestrian Accidents
When a motorized vehicle hits into a pedestrian, even at a low rate of speed, the injuries can be severe and life-threatening. The most common injuries are back and neck injuries, broken bones, bumps and bruises, and head injuries. Of these, traumatic brain injuries are likely the most severe and can lead to long-term disabilities. Some injuries might require lengthy hospital care, multiple surgeries, and extended rehabilitative treatment. If you were hurt in a pedestrian accident, it is essential to seek immediate medical treatment, even if you do not immediately feel hurt. Many injuries, including severe head trauma, can worsen over the hours following a crash.
Pedestrian Safety Tips
Pedestrians and drivers need to ensure safety. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states there is a pedestrian death about every 88 minutes. They offer guidelines to help people prevent crashes that involve pedestrians. People who are walking should do so only on designated sidewalks. Cross the street only at a crosswalk, and only when the traffic light indicates it is safe to walk. Pay attention when you walk and do not use a cell phone. Keep earbuds out of your ears so you can hear traffic noises.
Drivers should practice defensive driving and pay attention to people in and near the roadways. Drivers must not use electronic devices such as phones and GPS units that can distract them from the road. Many accidents are caused by impaired driving. Drivers must not use alcohol or substances that could keep them from driving safely.
What to do After a Pedestrian Accident
If you or someone you love were hurt in a pedestrian accident, follow several steps. Call the police and file a report. The police will collect driver and witness statements that will help prove negligence by the driver.
Get medical attention soon. Call a reputable car accident attorney to guide you through the legal issues. You need to concentrate on your recovery.
At Baumgartner Law Firm, we have obtained millions of dollars for our injured clients. Contact Baumgartner Law Firm today for a free initial consultation. Call (281) 587-1111!