While some pedestrian accidents occur on sidewalks, the vast majority of these collisions occur when a pedestrian is crossing in a crosswalk. A traffic safety report published by the California Department of Public Health in 2017 said that “San Francisco and Los Angeles were the top two counties for non-fatal pedestrian injuries.”
Pedestrians are more likely to sustain catastrophic injuries or die when colliding with motor vehicles compared to motorcyclists, bicyclists, car drivers, and truck drivers. That’s because pedestrians are the most vulnerable road users, as they are exposed to direct impact in collisions and are not protected by layers of steel and metal.
Fact: Statistically speaking, a pedestrian is injured every eight minutes in the U.S.
Our Los Angeles pedestrian accident lawyer at Compass Law Group, P.C., says that even though the vast majority of motor vehicle crashes involving a pedestrian occur on crosswalks, accidents when pedestrians are on sidewalks, exiting or entering buses or taxis, stepping off curbs, and standing on roadsides are just as common in California. More than one-third of all pedestrian deaths occur when a pedestrian is crossing in a crosswalk. Let us explain why crossing in a crosswalk has become so dangerous nowadays.
Why crosswalk injuries are so common
Most of you will relate to this one. When crossing in a marked crosswalk, pedestrians have a false sense of security. Just because you are crossing in a crosswalk does not necessarily mean that nothing bad will happen to you. After all, there are plenty of drivers who speed, run red lights, get distracted behind the wheel, or fail to yield the right of way to pedestrians.
In addition to that, you might have noticed that many crosswalks in Los Angeles and elsewhere in California are inadequately marked or lack flashing lights, stop signs or other warnings to warn drivers that they need to decelerate and yield to pedestrians crossing the street.
Also, many pedestrians in Los Angeles complain that there is insufficient crossing time on crosswalk signals. It is true that crossing time in Los Angeles is not sufficient because our city has some of the most congested roads in the U.S.
However, in recent years, lawmakers did impose regulations to allow pedestrians more crossing time. “The only problem is that many cities, including Los Angeles, have failed to adjust the timing of their crosswalk signals,” says our experienced pedestrian accident lawyer in Los Angeles. Meaning: if you cannot walk fast or are crossing with children or elderly in a crosswalk on a multi-lane street or highway, expect drivers to honk at you impatiently or begin driving even though you have not crossed over to the other side yet.
How Los Angeles can do more to prevent crosswalk accidents
Our Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney at Compass Law Group, P.C., can explain why we have this epidemic of pedestrian crashes in Los Angeles. First of all, our city is the second most populous city in the U.S., which means there are more pedestrians in Los Angeles than in most other cities in our country.
Second of all, intersection design in Los Angeles – and in the vast majority of other cities in California, for that matter – has always focused on moving traffic efficiently and reducing traffic congestion rather than ensuring the safety of pedestrians.
Therefore, motorists driving safely and yielding the right of way to pedestrians is one thing. Another thing is implementing design modifications with the goal to reduce risks for pedestrians and ensure the safety of pedestrians crossing in crosswalks in Los Angeles and all across California.
If you have been injured while crossing in a crosswalk, do not hesitate to speak to our pedestrian accident lawyer in Los Angeles at Compass Law Group, P.C. Schedule a free consultation to determine liability in your case. You deserve the maximum compensation for your injuries and losses.