Pedestrian accidents lead to severe injuries, life threatening injuries and fatalities and these are unfortunately recorded every single year in Arizona. Arizona has a higher rate of fatalities as a result of pedestrian accidents than the rest of the country and this issue should be addressed by the public and our government. The Arizona Department of Transportation conducted a study in 1985 and called pedestrian accidents “a severe problem in Arizona.” Regrettably, this problem just seems to be getting worse in Arizona with the high speeds of vehicles, poor lighting, and an increased use of cell phones that did not exist in 1985.
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Among the causes of pedestrian accidents in Arizona where the drivers are held to be at fault some contributing factors stand out including failure to yield, inattention, and not respecting the speed limit.
Failure to yield to pedestrian: A common accident seen throughout this country is the failure to yield a pedestrian when turning right at an intersection. This is a big problem for those who are blind and walk into an intersection when it is their turn to move forward. The driver at the intersection does not yield to the pedestrian and the blind person is ran over. Other failure to yield incidents are commonly at university areas and major streets in the City where the driver’s eagerness to arrive at their destination is a priority over the safety of pedestrians.
Inattention: Not paying attention during driving is another factor cited by law enforcement when a person is hit by a car in Arizona. Cell phone use or distractions of the driver can lead to incredibly dangerous conditions where the lives of pedestrians are placed at risk. It should be no surprise to anyone that running over a pedestrian can lead to criminal charges. Nonetheless, most pedestrian injuries result in misdemeanor charges despite the life-changing injuries that the victim suffers. At times, felony charges are also possible for offenses such as DUI, vehicular manslaughter, or hit-and-run.
Excessive Speed: Traveling too fast does not allow a driver to react properly to a condition on the road or to a pedestrian who is crossing the street. Braking is severely affected by speeding because a vehicle will take much longer to decelerate or come to a complete stop when a driver is driving 10, 20 or 30 miles per hour above the speed limit. Speed is the most commonly cited factor in crashes.
Injuries After Pedestrian Accidents
The injuries after a pedestrian accident range from road rash and broken bones to traumatic brain injuries and death. Many of our clients have to go through a neuropsychological evaluation after a traumatic brain injury is found after a pedestrians vs. car accident. The dynamic of these accidents change completely as opposed to a car vs. car collision. The pedestrian has no protection whatsoever from the vehicle that strikes him or her and the victims are often pushed under the car. Understanding the injuries and the mechanism of the injuries can allow you to successfully handle your claim after a pedestrian accident.
Pedestrian Accidents Attorney
We have handled many pedestrian accidents and we understand how damaging these accidents can be. Understanding the litigation of pedestrian accidents will be very important as defense attorneys typically use a “dart out” defense and blame the pedestrian for the accident. American law is an adversarial system where the plaintiff and the defense attorneys will advocate for their respective clients. Defense attorneys will try to place as much comparative fault on the pedestrian or all fault upon the pedestrian to avoid financial compensation. These cases and many other cases cannot be handled without an attorney because the claims will only have one arbitration or one trial. For this reason, it is important to explain to the arbitrator or jury that safe driving behaviors can minimize injuries or prevent the collisions with pedestrian altogether.