Fair Oaks Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
When someone hears “car accident”, they typically imagine a collision at an intersection between two vehicles, multi-car pileups, and fender benders. However, a high percentage of auto accidents involve pedestrian injuries and fatalities.
Statistically, pedestrian accidents are surprisingly common. Traffic fatality data indicates that California is one of the most dangerous states in the country to be a pedestrian. During only the first half of 2015, over 300 pedestrians were killed in collisions with an automobile while the pedestrian was running, jogging, or walking.
Nationally, an estimated 5,376 pedestrians died in a collision with a motor vehicle. That translates to close to 15 people every single day of the year, according to pedbikeinfo.org. If that was not bad enough, that total represents the highest number of pedestrian fatalities in one year since 1996. The total number of traffic-related deaths fell by nearly 18 percent from 2006 to 2015, but pedestrian deaths jumped by 12 percent during the exact same period.Causes of Serious Pedestrian-Related Collisions
Far and away, the most common cause of a collision between a car and a pedestrian is the negligence of the automobile driver negligence. A driver is negligent when he or she has failed to use a reasonable amount of caution that should be expected from a similarly situated driver. Some of the most common types of driver-related negligence include:
- High-speed collisions (speeding and reckless driving)
- Distracted driving (texting or calling while driving)
- Turning collisions (failure to look before turning through an intersection or driveway)
- Low-speed zone collisions (not slowing down through school zones and the like)
Not all pedestrian accidents involve death, although many often result in catastrophic injuries that require an extensive amount of time to rehab and may never fully heal. These injuries include multiple broken bones, scarring, torn ligaments, spinal cord damage, head wound or a traumatic brain injury, and/or loss of limbs. Injured pedestrians are often saddled with soul-crushing medical debt, even when they have health insurance (especially for people who purchase high deductible health plans that also require payment of co-insurance). In addition to the medical bills, most pedestrian injuries have long recovery periods, which means days, if not weeks, of missed work.Pursuing Financial Restitution in Your Fair Oaks Pedestrian Accident Case
The purpose of a personal injury lawsuit is to make a victim “whole” and properly compensate them for the injuries they suffered as a proximate result of the negligence of a driver. This means you can pursue financial restitution for the following harms and losses:
- Medical expenses stemming from the collision: You can be reimbursed for medical costs such as surgery, emergency room bills, physical therapy, and other related-costs.
- Lost wages due to time missed from work (including lost future wages): If you were forced to miss time from work due to your injuries, you are allowed to seek reimbursement of those lost wages. This includes vacation days and sick leave that you may have been forced to use during your recovery.
- Pain and suffering: California law allows an injured pedestrian to pursue damages for the agony and inconvenience associated with the incident, and also provides compensation for any long-term emotional trauma resulting from disfiguring scars and other emotional trauma.
In some accidents, there may be evidence that both you and the driver were negligent. If this is the case, that does not mean you are forbidden to file a personal injury claim. In fact, California law allows an injured party to pursue a financial recovery, even if they were partially at-fault. This is known as comparative negligence. Most states across the country have adopted this standard, in some form or another. Basically, it allows a jury to award you damages based on a percentage of fault. So, for example, if you have $100,000 in damages and a jury finds that you were 25 percent at-fault for the accident, the jury will reduce your damage award by 25 percent. That would leave you with a recovery of $75,000.
I’m Ed Smith, a Fair Oaks pedestrian accident lawyer. If you or someone you hold dear has been hurt or passed away in a pedestrian accident in Fair Oaks or surrounding area, please call me today at 916.921.6400 for compassionate, free and friendly advice.
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