As a pedestrian, one of the most frightening things that can happen to you is being hit by a motor vehicle. With the rise of technology, pedestrian accidents have increased in recent years, as drivers can be distracted by their phones or the technology in their vehicle. Though no one intends to hit pedestrians, when a driver is distracted, they may fail to notice pedestrians or obstacles on the road, which may ultimately contribute to or lead to an accident. If you’ve been injured in a pedestrian accident in Irvine, you may be entitled to compensation.
Contact the Irvine personal injury lawyers of OnderLaw . You can contact us online or give us a call to schedule a free consultation. You won’t need to pay us anything until we’ve obtained compensation for your injuries.
Why Do I Need A Lawyer?
When you’re hurt in an accident, a lawyer can be a great asset to you. A lawyer can investigate your claim, gather medical documents and other relevant information, and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. Additionally, an attorney can help you identify your next steps and advise you about how to move forward in the event that your claim is denied.
It’s possible for you to go through the process of filing a personal injury claim on your own. But when you’re injured in an accident, putting together a case, advocating for your rights, and engaging in settlement negotiations with the insurance company are likely the last things you’ll want to deal with. You’ll want to focus on your recovery, and a skilled and compassionate lawyer can help you with that by taking on the responsibility for filing a personal injury claim on your behalf.
Why Choose OnderLaw ?
OnderLaw is a trusted law firm in the city of Irvine and beyond. For more than 19 years, we’ve served clients who’ve been victimized in personal injury accidents of varying types. We help them secure the compensation they’re entitled to while we advocate for and preserve their personal rights. Collectively, we’ve helped to secure over $3 billion in compensation for our clients, and we will continue to provide top-notch legal representation to those who have been hurt in accidents.
Many of our incredible attorneys are members of several reputable legal organizations throughout the nation. Some noteworthy organizations we’re proud to boast about our membership in include: Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Super Lawyers, and Rue Ratings Best Attorneys of America.
If you choose to select OnderLaw to serve you and your legal needs, you can trust in your decision with the knowledge that you have some of the most sought-after attorneys fighting on behalf of your best interests.
Pedestrian Laws in California
Pedestrian laws include rules and regulations for both drivers and pedestrians alike to ensure the safety and well-being of both parties.
Pedestrian laws that drivers are expected to follow include:
- If a driver approaches a pedestrian crossing at a corner or other crosswalk, marked or unmarked, they are required to reduce their speed or stop if necessary.
- If a driver approaches another vehicle stopped at a crosswalk, they aren’t permitted to pass, as there may be a pedestrian crossing the street.
- Drivers aren’t permitted to drive on the sidewalk unless they’re attempting to enter or exit an alley or driveway, and when doing so, they’re expected to yield to pedestrians.
- Drivers aren’t permitted to stop in crosswalks.
- Drivers are expected to allow sufficient time for pedestrians who are older, disabled, or who are with young children to cross the street.
- Drivers are expected to follow street signage concerning pedestrians. For example, when a blind pedestrian pulls in their cane and steps away from the intersection, drivers can take this as a sign that it is OK for them to advance.
Pedestrian laws that pedestrians are expected to follow include:
- Pedestrians are expected to exercise caution and good judgment when crossing the street.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a marked or unmarked crosswalk.
- Pedestrians seeking to cross a roadway by means other than a pedestrian tunnel or overhead pedestrian crossing are expected to yield the right-of-way to all vehicles on the highway.
- Pedestrians seeking to cross a roadway in the absence of a pedestrian tunnel or overhead pedestrian crossing are expected to yield the right-of-way to all vehicles on the highway.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to cross the roadway at any place other than a crosswalk between intersections controlled by traffic signal devices or law enforcement.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to walk on roadways outside of businesses or residence districts unless they’re on their left-hand edge of the roadway.
- Pedestrians may walk close to their right-hand edge of the roadway if a crosswalk or other means of safely crossing the road isn’t available or if existing traffic or other conditions may pose a risk to the safety of the pedestrian.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to stand in the middle of a roadway in order to solicit a ride from a driver.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to use bike paths or lanes when there’s a designated path or lane for pedestrians.
- Pedestrians aren’t permitted to unnecessarily stop any vehicle in a way that causes said vehicle to block a marked or unmarked crosswalk or sidewalk.
Types of Pedestrian Accidents
There are several types of pedestrian accidents possible. However, the circumstances surrounding an accident will ultimately determine the kind of accident you’re injured in. Some of the most common types of pedestrian accidents include:
- Backing vehicle accidents
- Work or play accidents
- Crossing a highway accidents
- Off-road accidents
- Walking on the side of the road accidents
- Through-vehicle at an intersection accidents
- Turning vehicle at an intersection accidents
- Failure to yield at a crosswalk accidents
- Mid-block dart and dash accidents
- Multiple threat accidents
- Mailbox or mid-block vehicle accidents
- School bus crossing accidents
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents can occur for a variety of reasons ranging from impatient drivers to defective traffic lights. No matter the cause, pedestrian accidents are often more devastating than other crashes because pedestrians have nothing to protect themselves with. The most common causes of pedestrian accidents include:
- Drugged driving
- Drunk driving
- Drowsy driving
- Distracted driving
- Impatient drivers
- Reckless or aggressive driving
- Failure to stop or yield or obey other traffic laws
- Weather conditions or poor visibility
- Unmarked crosswalks
- Left-hand turns
- Rolling stops
- Inexperienced drivers
- Improperly installed or ineffective traffic lights
Common Injuries Suffered in Pedestrian Accidents
There are many injuries possible in a pedestrian accident. In some cases, pedestrian accidents can be so devastating that a pedestrian succumbs to their injuries. The most common injuries suffered by victims of pedestrian accidents include:
- Fractured, dislocated, or broken bones
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Head and neck injury
- Spinal cord damage
- Strains and sprains
- Cuts, scrapes, and road rash
- Lacerations and abrasions
- Shoulder and elbow injury
- Hip and knee damage
- Ankle and foot injury
- Facial and dental injuries
Proving the Other Party was Negligent
In order to prove negligence in California, you’ll need to provide evidence that the other person involved in the accident owed it to you to exercise caution and good judgment, that they failed to exercise caution and good judgment, and that their failure to exercise caution and good judgment is what ultimately led to or caused the accident and your subsequent injuries.
For example, say you’re crossing a crosswalk and you’re struck by an oncoming vehicle. In this scenario, the driver is at fault because they owed it to you to slow their speed or yield to you. They failed to do either action, and their failure to slow down or stop is what caused the accident.
Compensation for a Pedestrian Accident Claim
The compensation you can expect to receive depends on the severity of your injuries and the time it takes you to recover. Compensation for personal injury cases generally includes:
- Medical expenses. Following an accident, you’re likely to need medical attention. However, medical bills are costly and can add up quickly. Fortunately, you can seek to recover damages for the medical expenses you incur. Medical expenses include things such as x-rays, MRIs, transportation by ambulance, hospital and emergency room visits, prescription medications, physical rehabilitation therapy, and more.
- Lost wages. Your injuries may force you to take time away from work to focus on your recovery. Unfortunately, you may temporarily lose your ability to earn a living, which may leave you wondering about how you’ll provide for yourself while you’re trying to recover from your injuries. If this is the case for you, you can seek compensation for the wages you lose due to your time away from work in recovery from your injuries.
- Lost earning capacity. Your injuries may be so severe that you’re unable to return to work or perform at your fullest capacity, losing your ability to earn a living for yourself. However, you can seek to recover damages for your lost earning capacity that results from an accident.
- Property damage/loss. You may have had items or belongings on your person at the time of the accident that were damaged or lost. If this is the case for you, you can seek compensation for the value of the repair or replacement of those items.
- Pain and suffering. You can seek to recover damages for the pain and suffering you’re forced to endure.
- Emotional distress. An accident may have been so traumatic that you go on to suffer from emotional disturbances or mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) because of the crash. If this is the case for you, you can seek compensation for the emotional distress caused by an accident.
- Loss of enjoyment. Your injuries may be so severe that you’re unable to participate in recreational or other activities you derived enjoyment from prior to an accident. While there may be nothing that can be done to recover your quality of life, you can seek to recover damages for the loss of enjoyment the accident caused.
- Loss of consortium. Pedestrian accidents can be so devastating that your loved one succumbs to their injuries. If this is the case for you and your family, you can recover compensation for the loss of the decedent’s love, companionship, and guidance, otherwise known as the loss of consortium.
- Exemplary damages. You can expect to recover exemplary damages if there’s sufficient evidence that your accident was caused by another person’s willful intent to cause you harm. If this is found to be the case in a court proceeding regarding an accident, you might recover exemplary damages in addition to other forms of compensation.
California Accident Statistics
It goes without saying that pedestrian accidents occur throughout the U.S. each day. However, you may be interested to know the rate of pedestrian accidents and fatalities in the state of California. We’ve collected a small sample of statistics to show the severity of this issue in California:
- According to the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), 893 pedestrians were killed on California roads in 2018.
- Data collected by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) revealed that 519 pedestrians were killed in California between January and June of 2019.
- The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) found that 6,205 pedestrians were killed across the U.S. in 2019.
Contact an Irvine Pedestrian Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a pedestrian accident in Irvine, contact OnderLaw today. Give us a call or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.