Houston Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
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National statistics indicate that people are choosing to walk to their destinations more than ever. This could contribute to the rising number of annual pedestrian accidents in the United States. In 2013, pedestrians constituted 14% of all traffic fatalities, according to the NHTSA. If you or a loved one was hurt in a pedestrian accident, our team at Arnold & Itkin can fight for you. We encourage you to contact a top-rated Houston pedestrian accident attorney from our team as soon as possible in order to discuss your rights in a free evaluation.
Learn how a Houston pedestrian injury lawyer can help by calling (888) 493-1629!
Abogados de accidentes de auto en Houston
Pedestrian Injury Statistics in the United States
According to the NHTSA, in 2013 approximately 4,700 pedestrians were killed in traffic accidents, and an additional 66,000 were injured. This equates to a pedestrian fatality taking place every two hours in the United States, and a pedestrian injury every eight minutes.
The state of Texas also has some work to do when it comes to pedestrian safety. Texas had the third-highest pedestrian fatality rate in the nation, with 480 pedestrian deaths in 2013. In Houston alone, 43 pedestrian fatalities occurred—constituting almost 23% of all traffic fatalities.
Children & the Elderly Are at Increased Risk of Pedestrian Accidents
The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) has reported that pedestrians are 1.5 times more likely than vehicle occupants to suffer a fatality in a traffic accident. There are groups of pedestrians who are statistically even more likely to be seriously hurt or injured. Elderly adults constitute one high-risk group. Americans aged 65 years or older accounted for 20% of all traffic pedestrian deaths in 2012. Children are also at risk. In 2012, more than 20% of pedestrian deaths involved children between the ages of 5 and 15.
Tips for Pedestrian Safety
Pedestrians who commute in areas without proper sidewalks are also at an increased risk of death or injury. When sidewalks are not available, pedestrians should stay on the shoulder and should walk facing or against traffic, rather than with the flow of traffic. This allows the pedestrian better visibility and the ability to see oncoming cars and traffic conditions so that they can move out of the way if necessary.
Pedestrians should also practice safe habits such as:
- Wearing bright or reflective clothing, especially at night
- Carrying a flashlight
- Using only designated crosswalks
- Following all applicable traffic signs and signals
- Staying on the sidewalk when possible
There are some crosswalks and intersections that are notoriously dangerous for pedestrians. In these scenarios, successful claims and lawsuits have been filed against cities for their failure to provide adequate crosswalks and warning signals. Contact a pedestrian accident lawyer if you believe city planners played a role in your pedestrian accident. Drivers also play a role in protecting pedestrians. So how can they help maintain pedestrian safety? Drivers frequently fail to give the right of way to pedestrians. They may also fail to look carefully before crossing a street. Drivers need to be vigilant at night or in low-light situations; studies show the risk of accidents significantly increases after sunset.
Drunk Driving: A Leading Cause of Pedestrian Death
One of the leading causes of pedestrian accidents is drunk driving. According to the CDC, alcohol plays a role in around 48% of traffic crashes that end in a pedestrian fatality. Drivers who choose to drive while intoxicated endanger all those on or near the road.
Unfortunately, many drunk drivers also leave the scene of the car accident and fail to provide aid to those injured. Any driver who is involved in an accident is required to stop and assess the situation. He or she must not only render aid to injured victims if necessary but must also stay at the scene of the accident in order to speak with law enforcement officials and to exchange insurance information.
Houston Pedestrian Accident FAQ
What Are the Main Causes of Pedestrian Accidents?
Distraction and alcohol use are two of the leading causes of pedestrian fatalities in the U.S. According to NHTSA statistics, nearly half of all fatal pedestrian accidents involved alcohol — either on the part of the pedestrian or the driver. Distraction may include any behavior that takes a driver's attention from the road, such as texting, eating, drinking, adjusting the radio or a navigation system, or even shaving or applying makeup. It only takes a moment of inattention to cause a serious accident involving a pedestrian.
If It Was an "Accident," Who's Responsible for Hitting a Pedestrian?
Even "accidents" have specific causes. An investigation into the circumstances leading up to a pedestrian accident will reveal exactly what caused it in the first place, and it will reveal who is responsible. This may be a driver who was looking down at their phone and did not notice a pedestrian in a crosswalk. It may be a truck driver who fell asleep at the wheel, veered off the road, and struck a pedestrian on a sidewalk. It may be a manufacturer that created faulty brakes, preventing a driver from stopping in time to avoid a pedestrian. When our Houston pedestrian accident lawyers take on a case, we work tirelessly to find out what happened and why.
Are Pedestrians Ever at Fault?
In some cases, a pedestrian could be partially responsible for an accident, but this is rare and will depend on the unique circumstances. Motorists must watch for pedestrians everywhere and at all times. They must take extra care when backing up out of a parking space or driveway, where pedestrians are more likely to be present. They must also take extra care at crosswalks and intersections and must yield the right of way to pedestrians at these places. It only takes a moment of carelessness for a driver to strike a pedestrian.
What Is My Pedestrian Accident Case Worth?
Each pedestrian accident case is different, and the value of yours will depend on several factors. The severity of your injuries, medical expenses, the cost of ongoing care, any lost earnings, and the continued impact that your accident will have on your life may all influence what your case is worth. With any pedestrian accident lawsuit, the goal will be to recover a settlement or award that helps you rebuild and move on.
Contact a Houston Pedestrian Accident Lawyer for a Free Consultation
Drivers who are responsible for pedestrian accidents will likely have to provide payment under their auto insurance policies. Injured pedestrians may also be able to secure additional coverage under their own auto insurance policies. Even if the driver that hit you has already been cited with a moving violation or drunk driving charges, you may be able to take additional actions against them. Our firm can help.
We have been serving our community for years, and our track record shows our ability to win major cases and achieve deserved compensation for our injured clients. Whether you or someone you love was seriously hurt or even killed in a Texas pedestrian accident, we invite you to contact Arnold & Itkin for tough advocacy and support during this challenging time. Let us make your voice heard to the parties responsible for your pain.
To learn more about your rights and to receive a free initial evaluation of your case, contact our firm at (888) 493-1629.