As a pedestrian, you should have concerns about being part of an accident with a motor vehicle. If you don’t, you may talk yourself into believing that you are 100 percent safe at all times.
It doesn’t matter if you’re walking on the sidewalk or crossing a busy street, there’s a chance you could be part of an accident.
Fortunately, with knowledge of why pedestrian-auto accidents occur, you’re in better position to avoid trouble. Here are some of the most common causes:
- Distracted driving: When a driver isn’t paying attention to the road, they may not see a pedestrian crossing the street. Just the same, a person could drive off the road when distracted, thus hitting people on the sidewalk.
- Speeding: Speeding, especially in a crowded city, greatly increases the chance of a pedestrian-auto accident.
- Disobeying traffic signals and signs: There are many signals and signs that drivers must obey if they want to avoid trouble on the road.
- Failure to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks: As a pedestrian, you have the legal right to cross the street at crosswalks. This means that drivers must stop as you make your way across the street. Even though this is the law, it doesn’t mean that all drivers will adhere to it.
- Disregarding weather conditions: From sun glare to rain to wind, drivers must take weather conditions into consideration at all times.
- Driving under the influence: Drugs and/or alcohol can impair a driver’s judgment, thus greatly increasing the chance of striking a pedestrian or another vehicle.
There are things you can do to improve your safety as a pedestrian, such as crossing the road at crosswalks and making eye contact with drivers.
Even if you do these things, a mistake by a driver could cause an accident.
If you’re struck by a motor vehicle there’s a good chance you’ll suffer a serious injury, such as a concussion or broken bones.
The first thing you should do is call 911 for help. If this isn’t possible, ask someone to make the call for you. Once you receive treatment, learn more about the cause of the accident. This will help you understand what steps to take next and how to protect your legal rights as a pedestrian.