Pedestrian Accidents and Your Legal Rights to Sue


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Pedestrian accidents Lawsuit

Car accidents in South Florida don’t just affect the passengers in the automobiles involved — they can affect pedestrians just as much, and sometimes even more so, than those behind the wheel or in the passenger and back seats. The simple act of walking across the street or strolling down the sidewalk can result in a fatality – something you may not think about until you hear that Florida recently ranked number two in the country for overall car accident deaths.

It’s not uncommon to see people out and about in South Florida where it’s almost always considered “outdoor weather.” South Florida residents can be seen outside running, jogging, and bicycling along the busy streets at any given moment, which leaves a wide opening for the chance of being in harm’s way should a car accident happen in their presence. In the first six months of 2017, Florida was one of five states that accounted for 43 percent of all walking deaths (along with Texas, California, Arizona and New York). There were 303 pedestrians who were run over by an automobile that year, and 299 in the year prior.

This year hasn’t started off much better. In February, a pedestrian was killed in Miami Beach early in the morning, which resulted in the road closing for over five hours.

Is this the result of poor city planning? Perhaps there needs to be better lighting on the streets or more sidewalks… Or perhaps people need to pay more attention to what’s going on in front of them, rather than on their cell phones. We live in a day and age where people are constantly looking down on their phones and not paying attention to their surroundings. Yes, there is a much-needed campaign to reduce “texting and driving,” but what about also working to eliminate “texting and walking”?

There should be more of an emphasis on this phenomenon, as just as much damage can happen to someone who is texting while walking outside along the street, as can happen if they were texting while driving on the road. The two acts are one in the same. Parents should take note to teach their newly licensed children not only to put away their phones while driving, but also while navigating the streets on foot.

Pedestrian Car Accidents

Pedestrian accidents can happen at any time, in any place. Even a family-friendly activity that starts off as fun and games can be deadly. In November 2018, this happened to a Miami family. A father and his two daughters were struck by a car as they crossed the street during an innocent night of Halloween Trick or Treating. We imagine these young girls — ages two and five — started off the evening with smiles on their faces and eager excitement to show off their costumes, while their beaming father looked forward to sharing this daddy-daughter experience with them. The two-year-old was lucky, and only sustained minor injuries to the head, however the father and his five-year-old daughter died on the scene.

Situations like these should not be the norm. Situations like these should and could be avoided. However, in the instance that a situation like this does occur, an expert car accident attorney will be needed to bring justice to the families suffering from the loss of their family members.

Pedestrians have the same rights to use the road as those in an automobile, and thus must both obey and respect the same laws as drivers and passengers. However, this also means that they have the same rights if they are involved in a car accident. Just as with auto accidents, it’s ideal to have a skilled and successful auto accident attorney on your side to help you win your case, and receive the compensation you deserve.

In most cases, the injured party or the family of the deceased will need to prove that there was negligence and disobedience to the law on the part of the driver. This is the most important part when filing your complaint. Evidence must be retrieved that shows the driver was not following safety precautions. This evidence can come from police reports, CCTV road footages, and witness testimonials. However, it should be noted that the driver can use this same information to accuse the passenger of also not following correct safety laws.

There is also times when a pedestrian can be found at fault for the accident. For example, if a pedestrian jaywalks and is hit by a car, the driver may not be held responsible because of the pedestrian’s traffic violation. Pedestrians are required to obey stop signs, traffic lights and traffic enforcers, just as an automobile driver does.

Situations may arise when both the pedestrian and the driver are at fault, or it could be the fault of the road itself, and thus it would be in the best interest to sue the authorities who are responsible for maintaining the road.

Navigating through these various situations and the requirements and law limitations involved can be tricky to figure out on your own. Our team of attorneys at the law office of Wolf & Pravato will do their part to learn the details of your case, and give you the best advice on what actions to take to get due compensation.

Compensation fees for these types of accidents depend on the severity of the damage incurred by the accident. If there has been a serious physical injury — things like disfigurement, paralysis, or in the worst case, death — the settlement fees will be higher. In this case, the injured party may also receive settlement fees for the non-physical, emotional damages that come along with these types of injuries, i.e., suffering, depression, or trauma. In the case that the injury is less serious, there is still damage compensation to be won for lost wages and medical bills.

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