If a pedestrian caused an accident, they might need to rely on their medical insurance or other resources to pay for their treatment instead of holding the motorist liable. While the liability in these cases usually falls on the driver who has a higher duty of care than a pedestrian, there are times when these accidents occur because of a pedestrian’s negligence.
Potential examples include when the person on foot jaywalks, crosses against a traffic signal, steps out in front of traffic mid-block, or takes other actions that violate the law or common sense.
Drivers Have a Duty to Prevent Pedestrian Accidents
In general, pedestrians have the right-of-way. Motorists must yield to them when turning, stop when they are in a crosswalk, and leave them plenty of room if they walk along the road. Drivers are responsible for being alert and cautious in areas where foot traffic is common, such as in parking lots, urban areas, and near parks.
Many states even have specific rules about when you can proceed after a pedestrian crosses the road or what you should do when you see a pedestrian enter a crosswalk. Following all traffic rules and safety measures is the best way to prevent a pedestrian crash.
While the “fault” in most of these collisions falls on the driver, there are some cases when the pedestrian’s negligence causes an accident. This situation may occur when they act recklessly and put themselves in danger.
Pedestrians Can Suffer Injuries Because of Their Own Negligence
Pedestrians can behave in ways that make it almost impossible for drivers to avoid an accident. The most common way this occurs is when a pedestrian ignores rules about crossing the road or walking along the road. Crossing the road at a crosswalk is safest, and pedestrians should always try to cross at an intersection if there is no designated crosswalk available.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), most fatal pedestrian collisions occur outside intersections or crosswalks. Only 18% occurred at an intersection in 2017. Roughly 9% occurred on the roadside, in parking areas, on sidewalks, in bike lanes, or in other non-traffic locations.
Any incident that occurs when a pedestrian crosses the road outside of a designated area or intersection—or when they cross against a traffic signal—could be the pedestrian’s fault, depending on the circumstances of the crash.
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Third-Party Claims Following a Pedestrian Accident
In cases where it appears that a pedestrian caused an accident, there may be another liable party outside of the motorist or the pedestrian. This liable party could include the landowner or agency tasked with designing, building, and maintaining the sidewalk, road, or parking lot. They could be at fault if there was a problem with the property that led to the accident.
For example, a poorly designed or marked parking lot that does not require drivers to slow down or stop in pedestrian-heavy areas could be a hazard to foot traffic. It may be possible to develop a case against the property owner or another liable party.
Learn More About Your Pedestrian Accident Case
If you were hit by a car and have questions about your case or whether you qualify to hold the driver responsible, let a personal injury law firm review your case. The civil codes in your state may allow you to hold the at-fault driver accountable if you can prove their negligence caused the accident and your injuries.
Depending on where you are and the circumstances that led to your accident, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages even if you were partially at fault. Note that there are time limits in place on pedestrian accident cases. Take action to learn more as soon as possible after your injuries occur.
Contact Morris Bart, LLC for Your Free Consultation Today
The Morris Bart law firm has offices in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Arkansas. Our team will evaluate your options for free. We may be able to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit on your behalf based on the facts of your case.
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