Westmoreland County is a beautiful place to traverse by foot, but danger lurks around every corner for pedestrians making their way from point A to point B. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, pedestrian deaths have risen by 46 percent across the nation in the past 10 years, although the overall number of traffic deaths not involving pedestrians has risen by just 5 percent. This indicates a serious problem for pedestrians who make their way by foot for pleasure and exercise or as a necessity to get to work or run errands. If you have been injured as a pedestrian, a Westmoreland County pedestrian accident attorney can help you hold the responsible party accountable for your injuries and damages.
Pedestrian Accident Causes
Pedestrian accidents can be among the most horrific to undergo but are among the most preventable. While every pedestrian accident is unique, there are some common causes of devastating accidents involving pedestrians. Chief among them:
- Speeding: It goes without saying that when a motorist exceeds the posted speed limit, reaction times are affected, and stopping for a pedestrian is more difficult. In many cases, motorists are driving too fast to safely stop before crashing into a pedestrian on foot. In other instances, motorists may be driving too fast for the prevailing conditions, and pedestrians are injured as a result. For example, it is snowing outside and the roads are becoming slick, but the motorist fails to slow down and allow extra braking time.
- Distracted driving: Drivers who are distracted by electronic devices such as cell phones or GPS units are not fully paying attention to the road. Distractions inside the cabin also lead to poor decisions on the road, such as dealing with people, kids, or pets or reaching for objects, taking the eyes off the road long enough for accidents to ensue.
- Drunk/drugged driving: Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is never a responsible thing to do. And when a driver is drunk or drugged, pedestrians often pay the price when drivers run them down or run them over, causing horrible injuries that may cause them problems for life – or even end their lives.
- Disobeying traffic control devices/signage: Recklessly disregarding stop signs, yield/merge signs, and other traffic control devices can lead to serious pedestrian accidents.
- Careless driving/reckless operation of a motor vehicle: Driving without regard to the safety and well-being of pedestrians and other motorists/occupants of other vehicles can lead to pedestrian accidents.
Compensation for Pedestrian Accidents
When filing a claim for compensation against the at-fault party following a pedestrian accident, plaintiffs may be entitled to a range of different awards, including money for medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering. In addition, the future cost of care, future lost wages, and diminished capacity for the victim to earn a living are also generally taken into account in serious pedestrian accidents.