Of all the types of crashes that happen on the roads of St. Louis, pedestrians accidents are among the most tragic.
The reason is that pedestrians have no protection, and are frequently severely injured or killed. If you or a loved one ever get into one of these accidents, it is a good idea to speak with a St. Louis car accident attorney about your to learn more about your legal right to compensation.
In 2015, 5,376 pedestrians died in car accidents. This was a 9.5% increase from the previous year, and the highest number since 1996 (Source: NHTSA). Though more recent data is not available, it is reasonable to assume that this number has stayed relatively static. Additionally, that same NHTSA report found that roughly 70,000 pedestrians were injured by vehicles throughout the year.
Though there are a variety of circumstances in which a pedestrian accident can occur, there are a few common culprits that are worth highlighting.
Alcohol – Just like all other types of car accidents, alcohol plays a crucial role in pedestrian accidents. The reason is that intoxication comprises a person’s reaction time and ability to make smart decisions. The result, for both drivers and pedestrians, is unsafe behavior and a high chance of injury.
Distraction – The second factor that leads to pedestrian accidents is distraction. This works both ways, as a distracted driver is more likely to hit a person, and a distracted pedestrian is more likely to put themselves in a dangerous situation.
Aggressiveness – While most drivers are civilized on the road, others are very aggressive. This frequently leads to pedestrian accidents. Additionally, an aggressive pedestrian can put themselves in danger by jaywalking or carrying out some other unsafe behavior.
Depending on which party you are, your avoidance strategies will be slightly different. As a driver, you should resist drinking and driving, distractions, and aggressiveness. Each of these changes will significantly increase your chances of not hitting a pedestrian.
As a pedestrian, your list of avoidance tips is similar. What surprises some is that alcohol plays a significant role on the pedestrian side of this equation, too. Drunk people are more likely to jaywalk, fall into the road, or pass out in a high traffic area. The result can be fatal. Additionally, a distracted pedestrian is more likely to be hit. To avoid this, you should put away your phone and any other distractions while walking. Lastly, you can resist aggression. This will mean looking both ways before crossing a street and being defensive when you think a driver might be dangerous.
Though you might think that the driver is always at fault in these situations, this is not necessarily the case. Despite a pedestrian being much more vulnerable than a driver, they can still be found negligent. On the other hand, the driver is often at fault, and they will likely pay a hefty sum due to the severity of the pedestrian’s injuries.
When a driver hits a pedestrian, the result is often tragic. Additionally, the severity of that pedestrian’s injuries can make their future personal injury case incredibly valuable. No matter which party you are in this situation, if you ever find yourself in it, it is important to discuss your case with an experienced St. Louis car accident lawyer. Give us a call 24/7 at (314) 361-4242 for a FREE case evaluation.