Over the last decade, pedestrian accidents have been on the rise in Los Angeles, making it one of the most dangerous U.S. cities for pedestrians. When hit by a motor vehicle, a pedestrian is much more likely to be killed or sustain serious injuries.
While more people are walking to school or work these days, there are also more vehicles on the road. The combination is driving up the number of pedestrian-car accidents. If you have been injured or have lost a loved one due to one of these accidents, it’s important to talk to a Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney to get the compensation you deserve.
The Governors’ Highway Safety Association states that U.S. pedestrian deaths increased by 27 percent between the years of 2007 and 2016, while other traffic fatalities decreased by 14 percent. California was the number one state in the nation for pedestrian deaths in the first half of 2017. In those six months alone, 352 pedestrians were killed. To demonstrate how high that number is, keep in mind that Hawaii and Wyoming only had one death each during that same period.
What Contributes to Pedestrian Accidents
A Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney or traffic expert can offer several different elements that contribute to pedestrian accidents. For example, both drivers and pedestrians get distracted by cell phones and don’t see each other. Also, as mentioned before, motorists are driving more often, and more people are choosing to walk to their destinations, so the number of cars and people on the road are at an all-time high. Seventy percent of pedestrian accidents happen after dark while visibility is low, and the Governor’s Highway Safety Association says that there’s a correlation between recreational marijuana legalization and pedestrian accidents.
Driver and Pedestrian Duties of Care
By law, drivers and pedestrians must follow certain duties of care. Drivers must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians crossing at unmarked intersections or marked crosswalks. They must slow down when approaching crosswalks, so pedestrians can safely cross.
Pedestrians also have duties of care in California. They must not step off the curb into the path of an oncoming vehicle that is too close to stop. They must also cross the street at a quick pace, so they won’t interfere with traffic flow. However, even if pedestrians violate their duties of care, drivers still have the obligation to proceed with reasonable care, so pedestrians can safely cross the street.
If you’re seriously injured by a vehicle when trying to cross the street, an experienced Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney can help you recover damages to cover medical expenses and replace lost wages. With the help of Compass Law Group, LLP, you can prove that the driver was at fault for your accident and obtain the financial help you need.