Vacaville Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
The ramifications can be deadly when someone is hit by a car while crossing the street. For example, a Vacaville man was hit by a car on Woodcrest Drive between Alpine and Brown streets. The driver did not see the pedestrian but felt the impact when she struck him. Some reports indicate that the driver is blaming the morning sun.
Unfortunately, the tragic accident described above is not uncommon in and around Vacaville. California is a state with one of the highest fatality rates for pedestrians. In California, 23 percent of all traffic deaths involve pedestrians, well above the national average.
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, approximately 700 pedestrians lost their lives in motor vehicle collisions in 2014, just in California. A similar number of pedestrians, approximately 701, died in 2013 in California. Nationally, the numbers are not much better. For example, more than 4,700 pedestrians died on U.S. roadways in 2013. Furthermore, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that more than 70,000 pedestrians suffered severe bodily injuries in collisions with motor vehicles.
The studies conducted by the Governors Highway Safety Association discovered that, generally, a pedestrian is three times more likely to lose their life if they are hit by a motor vehicle traveling at 40 miles per hour or higher.How Pedestrian Accidents Occur In and Around Vacaville
In the vast majority of collisions involving a pedestrian, the cause of the collision can be attributed to a distracted, intoxicated, or generally inattentive motorist. In fact, it is pretty common for pedestrians to get hit by a motorist due to one or a combination of the following reasons:
- The driver was operating the vehicle recklessly
- The driver was under the influence of alcohol or prescription medications
- The driver was traveling at an excessive rate of speed
- The driver was distracted (e.g., texted and driving)
- The driver was drowsy(e.g., someone who was pulling an overnight road trip)
- The motorist failed to yield the right of way at a crosswalk or stop sign
- The motorist neglected a signal or traffic sign
Under California law, pedestrians generally have the right to cross the street in designated and unmarked crosswalks at an intersection. According to California Vehicle Code § 21950, a motorist is legally obligated to yield the right of way to a pedestrian attempting to cross the street in a crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.
The law also states that a motorist approaching a pedestrian within a designated or unmarked crosswalk must exercise due care. This means a motorist must reduce speed and be especially vigilant when traveling toward a pedestrian.
If motorists fail to exercise this due care, they may be held accountable for a personal injury claim.
Warning: Graphic Video: In the video below, a pedestrian was seriously injured after being hit by a police car responding to a robbery report.What to Do After a Pedestrian Accident in Vacaville
If you were hit by a motorist while crossing the street, there are specific actions you can take to protect your legal rights and improve the viability of a personal injury claim against the negligent motorist. If you are physically able, consider taking the following actions after the collision:
- Call 9-1-1 and ask that police arrive at the scene.
- Do not let the motorist leave the accident scene until the police have arrived to complete an accident report.
- Ensure you obtain the driver's contact information, including their full name, address, phone number, and auto insurance information.
- Get the contact information of witnesses who may have seen the collision occur.
- Take photos of your bodily injuries and the accident scene.
- Do not agree to give a recorded statement to the insurance company until you have had the chance to speak to a Vacaville personal injury lawyer.
- Seek medical attention right away and follow your doctor's treatment plan.
When a motorist hits a pedestrian, the pedestrian usually bears the brunt of the damage. This is because the pedestrian absorbs the full force of the impact while the motorist is protected with airbags, seatbelts, etc. As a result, many pedestrians wind up suffering severe bodily injuries, such as:
- Bone fractures and bone compressions
- Traumatic brain injury
- Torn ligaments and muscles
- Spinal cord injury
- Nerve damage
- Lacerations on your face and body
- Internal bleeding and organ damage
As you can see from the abovementioned injuries, a collision with a motorist can leave a pedestrian badly damaged. This often leaves the pedestrian harmed both physically and financially. As a result, you have the right to pursue financial restitution from the negligent motorist's insurance company. For example, you can pursue damages for the following harms and losses:
- Incurred medical expenses
- Future medical expenses
- Lost income and future earnings in the event of disability
- Pain, suffering, mental anguish, inconvenience
In some pedestrian accidents, the pedestrian may share some liability for causing the collision. For example, a pedestrian may have crossed the road while the hand signal was red or crossed without a marked crosswalk. Fortunately, this fact does not mean you are prohibited from obtaining financial restitution for your harm and losses. California adheres to the doctrine of comparative negligence. This legal standard means that a pedestrian can still be awarded damages. Still, the total amount awarded will be deducted based on a jury's percentage of fault assigned to the pedestrian.Vacaville Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
The consequences of an accident involving a pedestrian can be devastatingly catastrophic. If you or your loved one has been injured in an accident or killed, please do not hesitate to contact our experienced Vacaville pedestrian accident attorneys at (707) 564-1900 or (800) 404-5400 for free and friendly advice.
Editor's Note: updated [cha 9.3.21] sid Rey [cs 1033] Photo by Pixabay