In 2018, more pedestrians were killed in car accidents nationwide than in any year since 1990, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). These effects are felt close to home in Wisconsin, where more than 50 pedestrians died and more than 1,400 were injured in the same year. If you are struck by a vehicle while walking on or near the road, your injuries can be especially serious, and it is important that you know your options for pursuing compensation.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
A variety of factors may be involved in an accident between a vehicle and a pedestrian. The NHTSA reports that some of the most common include:
- Low visibility: A large number of pedestrian accidents occur at night and in the dark, in part because of the difficulty drivers may have in seeing a pedestrian.
- Urban areas: 80 percent of pedestrian accidents occur in urban areas where there is a greater amount of both vehicle and pedestrian traffic.
- Age of the victim: Pedestrian accidents disproportionately affect children under the age of 14 and adults over the age of 50, especially when the accidents are fatal.
- Alcohol impairment: Drunk drivers often injure pedestrians due to the effects of impairment on their awareness and ability to react, and drunk pedestrians may also put themselves at risk of fatal accidents.
- Distraction: Driver distraction due to cell phone use and other reasons can also be a contributing factor in pedestrian accidents, as can pedestrian distractions that may come from a mobile device or a music player that impedes a person’s hearing of their surroundings.
- Speeding and other traffic law violations: Drivers who exceed the speed limit, fail to yield the right of way to pedestrians, or do not give pedestrians adequate space can cause crashes, and pedestrians who do not obey crosswalks and walk signs can also put themselves at risk.
Personal Injury Cases Involving Pedestrians
As a pedestrian, wearing brightly colored clothing, staying aware of your surroundings, and correctly using crosswalks can all help you avoid an accident that may result in injuries. If you are injured due to a driver’s negligence, you have the right to pursue compensation just like any other user of the road. An attorney can help you gather evidence pointing to another driver’s impairment, distraction, recklessness, or other dangerous behavior. Unfortunately, hit-and-runs are fairly common in accidents involving pedestrians despite a driver’s legal duty to stop and assist, so you may also need an attorney to help you locate the at-fault driver.
Contact a Milwaukee Pedestrian Accident Attorney
At Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin & Brown, LLP, we believe that pedestrians deserve to be protected from accidents as much as drivers do, and we are committed to helping you hold a negligent party accountable for your injuries and pursue the compensation you need to cover your damages. Contact a Milwaukee, WI personal injury lawyer today at 414-271-1440.