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Rancho Murieta Pedestrian Accident Lawyer

pedestrians

Going for a walk is one of life’s little pleasures in Rancho Murieta. However, as more and more people are walking for pleasure, to go to work, and run errands, they also have to contend with increased traffic in the area. During the first six months of 2019, 519 pedestrians died in traffic crashes in California, an increase of 12 percent.

If you or a loved one is injured by a negligent driver or other entity, you may be entitled to claim fair compensation for your injuries. At Autoaccident.com, we’ve assisted many pedestrians since 1982 in obtaining the compensation they deserve. Call us at (916) 921-6400 for a free case evaluation and see what options are open to you.

Traffic Violations by Motorists at Crosswalks

The California Vehicle Code is specific on how a motorist must act when pedestrians are present. These behaviors include: 

  • A motorist must yield a pedestrian the right-of-way when they are in any marked or unmarked crosswalk.
  • No motorist should pass a vehicle if it is stopped at a crosswalk.
  • Don’t stop your vehicle inside the crosswalk. Forcing pedestrians to walk around places them in danger.
  • Yield to pedestrians on a sidewalk if you are exiting or entering an alley or driveway. 
  • If a motorist becomes involved in an accident to avoid a jaywalking pedestrian, the person on foot is at fault.
Government Negligence in Pedestrian Accidents

There are several ways that a pedestrian can be injured, even at a crosswalk. Government negligence that makes a crosswalk dangerous can include badly or non-functioning crossing lights, poor lighting, overgrown shrubs, and other problems. When lack of proper maintenance results in a pedestrian injury accident, the government entity in charge may be held liable. 

Enlisting the help of a lawyer is a good idea since the timeline for filing is much shorter than in other personal injury cases. By getting help, the injured party knows the claim will be handled correctly and filed within the statute of limitations. Otherwise, the lawsuit will not be heard in court.

What Can Be Claimed in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Because a pedestrian accident often involve serious injuries, it can result in extremely high medical bills, time away from work, and the pain and suffering experienced by the injured party. By placing a claim for compensation, the following can be recovered:

  • All medical expenses associated with the accident can be recouped from the cost of the ambulance to hospitalization, prescription medicines, tests, surgeries, and recuperation. If the injury continues into the future, your lawyer can factor those costs into the settlement.
  • After returning home, if the injured party requires modifications or medical equipment such as a walker, those costs can be recovered.
  • Out-of-pocket expenses are recoverable, such as the cost of making visits to and from the doctor.
  • Lost wages, including any bonuses and other areas of monetary value, can be recovered.
  • If the injured party cannot return to their old job and has to take a demotion, the difference in wages is recoverable.
  • Scars and disfigurement caused by the accident can be given a monetary value that is recoverable. This also includes the cost of restorative surgery if necessary.
  • Loss of enjoyment of life is recoverable. For example, if the injured party enjoyed skiing or other outdoor activities they can no longer perform, that is factored in.
  • Loss of consortium between spouses is recoverable. 
  • Damages for post-traumatic stress disorder are recoverable if the injured party is under professional treatment for this condition. 
Safety Precautions for Pedestrians

There are several things a pedestrian can do to stay safer when walking. Some tips that might help include:

  • Whenever possible, always use a dedicated crosswalk that has signals. Even if you have to walk a block to reach one, the incidence of injury accidents at dedicated crosswalks is less than those unmarked.
  • Drivers don’t always spot a pedestrian getting ready to cross the street. In some cases, it may be a drunk driver who can’t be trusted to stop for you in time. Even though the right of way may be yours, wait until traffic has stopped before crossing.
  • Keep an eye out for a vehicle trying to pull around another one that is stopped at the crosswalk. This can be a danger signal.
  • Wear brightly colored clothing during the day to make yourself more visible.
  • After dark, wear light clothing and use reflective tape to make yourself visible. Carrying a flashlight and sticking to well-lit areas helps too.
  • Don’t go walking when you’ve been drinking. 
  • Avoid distractions such as listening to music. If you’re tuned in to your favorite song at the time, you may not hear or see an approaching car.

The video below provides some safety tips to help pedestrians stay safe on the road. 

Using Insurance to Pay for Your Injury Expenses

When Rancho Murieta drivers first sign up for auto insurance, they are offered an optional policy covering uninsured/underinsured motorists. A high percentage of Californians take this optional policy because California has a surprising number of motorists who either have no insurance or are underinsured. The policy covers the holder whether they are injured in a motor vehicle or are on foot, on a motorcycle, or on a bicycle. 

An injured pedestrian can use their uninsured/underinsured policy to pay for their medical expenses. If they don’t carry this add-on insurance and another household member has it, that can be used instead. It doesn’t affect the price of the premiums.

Related Articles by Rancho Murieta pedestrian accident lawyer Ed Smith:

Rancho Murieta Pedestrian Accident Lawyer

My name is Ed Smith, and I am a Rancho Murieta pedestrian accident lawyer. When you’ve suffered an injury because of a negligent motorist, please call our injury lawyers for free, friendly advice at (916) 921-6400. You can also reach us at (800) 404-5400 or by contacting us online.

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