Children and the elderly are both particularly vulnerable to pedestrian injury
Anyone on or near a roadway is at risk of being involved in a car accident, especially in today’s society where distracted driving seems to be commonplace. Whether walking your dog on the sidewalk, waiting on the curb for a bus, or jogging on the shoulder, the danger of being hit by a car or truck is very real.
Even a slow-moving vehicle can cause an impact serious enough to injure or kill pedestrians because they have virtually no protection — no seat belts, no air bags, no helmets.
If you’ve been injured in a pedestrian accident or if you are the survivor of someone who was killed by a negligent driver, the attorneys at the Johnson Law Firm can help by reviewing your case and discussing all available legal options. Call us toll free at 606-437-4488. You can also contact us by filling out this form. We’re ready to help with a free initial consultation. We handle accident claims from anywhere in Kentucky with a concentration in Pikeville and surrounding areas.
Know the Numbers
Information gathered by the Fatality Analysis Reporting System Encyclopedia shows that nationwide, 4,743 pedestrians were killed and another 76,000 were injured in motor vehicle accidents in 2012 (the most recent year for which data is available).
On average, traffic crashes killed a pedestrian every two hours and injured a pedestrian every seven minutes. Statistics also show that the number of fatalities in 2012 was an increase of 6 percent from 2011 and were the most in the last 5 years. In 2012 alone, 49 pedestrians were killed on Kentucky roads.
WHO IS AT RISK?
Children and the elderly are both particularly vulnerable to pedestrian injury. Children are often less visible to drivers and have an underdeveloped ability to judge the speed of traffic. In fact, the most common cause of traumatic brain injury for children aged 5 to 9 is pedestrian injury. Senior citizens frequently have health problems that impair their ability to react quickly and may be disproportionately represented as they are forced to seek alternatives to driving as they age.
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE?
Both drivers and pedestrians are expected to exercise reasonable care and follow the rules of the road. In some states, pedestrians who are partly responsible for their injuries cannot collect any compensation because their negligence contributed to the accident. However, Kentucky follows a pure comparative fault system. This means that pedestrians who are partly at fault for an accident can still recover damages (even if they are 99 percent at fault), but their recovery is reduced by their degree of fault.
Turning off the phone, being aware of traffic patterns, and waiting for cars to pass if you are unsure you can cross safely can go a long way toward avoiding a collision. Without exercising such caution, pedestrians contribute to accidents by:
- Being inattentive near a roadway (talking, texting, eating, etc.)
- Being intoxicated
- Carelessly entering or leaving public transportation
- Following other pedestrians without adequately assessing personal risk
- Ignoring traffic signals
- Not using marked crosswalks.
Most pedestrian injuries and deaths are caused by careless or negligent motorists who cause accidents by:
- Disregarding weather or visibility
- Disregarding traffic conditions
- Distracted/reckless driving (especially texting)
- Drifting out of traffic lanes
- Driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs
- Failing to use turn signals
- Failing to yield right of way to pedestrians in crosswalks
- Not following traffic signs or signals
Motor vehicle collisions with pedestrians usually result in severe injuries, including broken bones, neck injuries, brain injuries, nerve damage, and loss of limbs. Pedestrian accident victims may have to contend with costly hospital stays, expensive medication, and lengthy rehabilitative regimens. Of course, a pedestrian injured in a motor vehicle accident can suffer psychological and emotional trauma even greater than any physical injury.
WHAT DO I DO NOW?
If you or a loved one has been hit by a car or truck, or if you are the survivor of someone who was killed by a negligent driver, you need skilled representation to protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. Contact the experienced KY pedestrian injury lawyers of the Johnson Law Firm for a free consultation by filling out this free evaluation form, calling us at 606-437-4488. For more than 15 years, we have been helping pedestrian accident victims and we can help you.
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