Jason Stephens | August 15, 2020 | Pedestrian Accidents
Drivers must yield the right of way to pedestrians crossing within a marked crosswalk. They must also yield the right of way to pedestrians when the vehicle is pulling out of or into an alley or driveway. If another vehicle has stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross, the driver may not pass the stopped vehicle.
However, pedestrians are required to yield the right of way when crossing the road outside of a marked crosswalk. They must also follow all traffic signals and signs directing the flow of traffic or signaling when it is safe to cross the street.
Cities and counties may have local ordinances that prohibit pedestrians from crossing or walking along some streets or roads. Whenever a sidewalk is present and accessible, the pedestrian should use the sidewalk. If there is not a sidewalk available, the pedestrian should walk on the side of the street facing traffic as far to the left as possible.
What Causes Pedestrian Accidents in Fort Worth?
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, the most common factors in traffic accidents involving pedestrians are:
- Driver inattention
- Drivers failing to yield the right of way to pedestrians
- Pedestrians failing to yield the right of way to motorists
Other factors that could contribute to a pedestrian accident include drowsy driving, driving under the influence, and poor visibility.
During 2019, 668 people died and 1,312 people were seriously injured in pedestrian accidents. A total of 5,954 crashes was reported involving pedestrians. Pedestrian accidents in the state increased by 17 percent from 2015 through 2019.
The GHSA reports that 2019 appears to be the worst year for fatal pedestrian accidents since 1988. Pedestrians represent 17 percent of all traffic fatalities each year. From 2009 through 2018, pedestrian deaths increased by fifty-three percent, while deaths from all other traffic accidents increased by just two percent.
Individuals can help reduce the risk of pedestrian accidents by remaining alert and watching traffic whenever they are driving or walking. Pedestrians can wear brightly colored clothing and carry flashlights to increase their visibility. Also, pedestrians should avoid walking after consuming alcohol or while using cell phones or other electronic devices.
What Should You Do After a Pedestrian Accident?
Pedestrian accidents can cause catastrophic injuries and conditions. From traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries to broken bones and internal organ damage, accidents involving pedestrians can result in severe injuries, significant financial losses, and debilitating pain and emotional suffering.
If you are involved in a pedestrian accident, the steps that you take immediately after the accident and in the months to come can help or hurt your injury claim. Pedestrians struck by vehicles should:
- Call 911 to report the accident and ask for police and EMS
- Never accept responsibility or admit fault for the cause of the pedestrian accident without talking to an attorney
- Immediately seek medical attention for injuries
- Document injuries and losses by taking photographs of the injuries and keeping documentation of financial expenses
- Do not provide a statement or answer questions for the insurance company without talking to a lawyer
- Complete medical treatment and follow the doctor’s treatment plan
- Do not accept a settlement offer without having an attorney review the offer
The insurance company may try to lower the value of your claim by alleging you are partially to blame for the cause of the accident. If the company or any party tries to blame you for the cause of the pedestrian accident, it is best to speak with a pedestrian accident lawyer immediately.
An attorney investigates the cause of the crash to determine who is responsible. Allowing an attorney to handle the injury claim means that you can focus on your recovery.
However, it also means that you have someone looking out for your best interests and fighting for full compensation for all injuries, financial losses, and damages caused by the accident.