Pedestrian injury law is incredibly complicated, which means that most Americans are in the dark about facts surrounding pedestrian accident cases. Tragically, this also enables some Americans to behave in a reckless, and illegal, manner due to their ignorance. Educating the public about pedestrian accidents, and the law surrounding them can help make the country a safer place, however. To help achieve this crucial goal, here are four important facts about pedestrian injury law that every American should know:
1. More than 4,000 Traffic Related Pedestrian Accidents Happen Every Year
Unfortunately, pedestrian accidents are much more common in the United States than most people are led to believe. As many as 4,000 of these accidents are attributed to auto accidents, and many states see their pedestrian accident toll rising in this area nearly every single year. When looking at general pedestrian accidents, the number shoots up to a whopping 76,000+ incidents every year. Understanding how to keep yourself safe around traffic, and in other dangerous scenarios or environments, can protect you from becoming a victim of a pedestrian accident. That being said, if you find yourself injured in a pedestrian accident through no fault of your own, it’s worth it to seek out the legal help of a pedestrian accident law attorney to ensure you get the compensation that you rightfully deserve. Doing so can ensure you have the financial cushion needed to heal from your injuries and hold those responsible for your injuries accountable.
2. Elderly Individuals Account for 20% of Pedestrian Deaths
Different age groups experience pedestrian accidents at varied rates. Tragically, elderly people (those above 65) are affected by pedestrian accidents more than any other age group in the United States of America. When looking at pedestrian accident-linked deaths, more than 20% of the victims were 65 or older. However, when analyzing the data that deals with general pedestrian accidents (that do not end in death), the number is fortunately much lower, with elderly people accounting for 9% of the victims. Many factors attribute to elderly folk being so drastically over-affected by pedestrian accidents. Because they often have a less functional sense of vision and/or hearing, they have a harder time determining when they are at risk of injury or illness in the public sphere. Additionally, elderly people suffer much more intensely from injuries, especially fractures (with hip fractures being deadly for nearly 50% of elderly people who suffer them).
3. Nearly 50% of Pedestrian Accidents are Alcohol-Related
Alcohol continues to be one of the most dangerous drugs in America, despite how widely available and used it is. Those who abuse alcohol, and who allow it to dull their senses and reason, put themselves at a much higher risk of being injured in a pedestrian accident. Currently, it’s estimated that upwards of 50% of pedestrian accidents involve alcohol in one way or another, often in excessive, dangerous amounts. When looking at auto-related pedestrian accidents, the numbers become even more tragic. Pedestrians find themselves in many dangerous situations due to alcohol abuse, including jaywalking accidents, slip and fall accidents, pedestrian-involved auto accidents, and more. By drinking responsibly, you can cut down on these devastating numbers. For those who struggle with alcohol abuse, there is always help available to help you kick the destructive and expensive habit. Doing so can make your community a safer place to live.
4. Drivers Can Be Held Responsible for Pedestrian Accidents
Lots of Americans assume that drivers cannot be held responsible for pedestrian accidents they’re involved in, but this is simply false in a vast majority of cases. In reality, a pedestrian accident can be blamed on a driver if they were acting negligently or illegally during the time of the accident. Driving under the influence, failing to follow traffic laws, and reckless driving can all become major factors in determining guilt in these cases. Personal injury suits can be brought forward against a driver in a pedestrian-involved accident if these factors are present. The court may make the driver pay for the medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional trauma of the victim if they are found guilty.
Here’s to a Safer Year for Pedestrians in 2023
As 2023 fastly approaches, more and more states are enacting laws meant to protect pedestrians from preventable accidents. As individuals, we can dedicate ourselves to joining these efforts in our day-to-day lives. In doing so, you can do your part in making the country a safer place to live.