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Hit by a Car as Pedestrian

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What happens when someone is hit by a car while walking?

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There’s nothing more jarring than being hit by a car as a pedestrian. It can happen while you’re walking through a bustling city street, crossing a quiet suburban road, or simply strolling in your neighborhood. The aftermath can be overwhelming, both physically and emotionally. But there are ways to seek justice and fast-track your path to recovery.

A Premier pedestrian accident attorney can help you navigate the complex legal process of pursuing a claim. Read on to find out how to start building your case and how an attorney can help you get fully compensated.

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Pedestrians are much smaller and slower moving compared to motor vehicles. Unlike drivers or passengers inside cars, pedestrians are fully exposed and lack safety features such as seat belts or airbags. 

The force of impact can result in severe injuries and even fatalities. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that over 7,000 pedestrians die each year in the United States. More than 60,000 pedestrians sustain injuries. 

Common pedestrian accident injuries

Being hit by a car as a pedestrian can result in various injuries. Many of them range from minor to severe and debilitating. The most common pedestrian accident injuries include:

  • Fractures: Pedestrian accidents often result in broken bones. This can include fractures in the arms, legs, hips, or spine.
  • Head injuries: Pedestrians are at risk of severe head injuries. This can occur when pedestrians hit their heads on a windshield or the ground. Common pedestrian head injuries include concussions, traumatic brain injuries, skull fractures, and contusions. 
  • Soft tissue injuries: Pedestrians may experience sprains, strains, and tears in ligaments, tendons, and muscles. These injuries can lead to pain, swelling, and limited mobility.
  • Spinal cord injuries: Severe pedestrian accidents can result in spinal cord injuries. This can lead to partial or complete paralysis. These injuries require immediate medical attention and long-term rehabilitation.
  • Internal injuries: Pedestrians can sustain internal injuries that may not be immediately apparent. These can include damage to organs, internal bleeding, or ruptured blood vessels. 
  • Cuts, lacerations, and abrasions: Pedestrians may sustain cuts, deep lacerations, or abrasions from contact with a vehicle or the road surface. Depending on the severity, stitches or surgical intervention may be necessary.

Pedestrian accidents can occur in various ways. The most common scenarios include:

  • Crosswalk accidents: This occurs when a car strikes a pedestrian who is legally crossing the street within a designated crosswalk.
  • Intersection collisions: Pedestrians can get hit by vehicles at intersections. This occurs due to drivers failing to yield or running red lights.
  • Sidewalk collisions: Pedestrians don’t always have to be crossing the street to get hit. Sidewalk collisions happen when vehicles veer off the road or fail to maintain control.
  • Backing up accidents: Pedestrians often get struck by vehicles reversing out of driveways, parking lots, or alleys.
  • Right turn accidents: Pedestrians can get hit by vehicles making right turns. This occurs when drivers turn without properly checking for pedestrians crossing the street.
  • Distracted driving accidents: Distracted drivers often fail to see pedestrians crossing the street or walking along the side of the road. Distracted driving is typically linked to cell phone use, in-vehicle technology, eating, grooming, and daydreaming.
  • Impaired driving: Impaired drivers often have poor judgment and coordination behind the wheel, putting pedestrians in danger.
  • Speeding accidents: Pedestrians sustain serious injuries when getting hit by speeding vehicles. Speeding reduces drivers’ reaction time and increases the severity of collisions.

If you have been hit by a car as a pedestrian, taking immediate action is important to ensure your well-being and protect your legal rights. Here are the steps you should follow:

  • Seek medical attention: The first and most crucial step is to seek medical help, even if you feel fine. A medical professional will be able to identify your injury and begin treatment early on. This will also provide evidence linking your injury to your pedestrian accident.
  • Collect information: If you’re physically able, gather the necessary information from the driver involved. This should include their name, contact details, insurance information, and license plate number. It’s also helpful to collect the contact information of any witnesses.
  • Document the incident: Take photos of the accident scene, your injuries, and any damage caused to the vehicle involved. This evidence will be beneficial when pursuing a pedestrian accident claim.
  • Contact the police: Call the police immediately and report the incident. They will create a report that provides an official record of the pedestrian accident, which an attorney can use to build your case.
  • Preserve evidence: Keep any relevant documents, medical records, or bills related to your injuries and treatment. These will be important when pursuing your claim.
  • Consult a pedestrian accident lawyer: If you were hit by a car as a pedestrian, consult an attorney who knows how to handle pedestrian accidents. They can guide you through the legal process and help protect your rights.

Pedestrian accident settlements typically involve a negotiation process between your attorney and the responsible party's insurance company. The settlement amount is determined based on various factors, including:

  • The severity of your injuries
  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Current and future lost wages.
  • Pain and suffering.
  • Loss of consortium.
  • Possible punitive damages.

To determine how much money you’re entitled to, your attorney will need to launch a thorough investigation. First, your attorney will establish liability by gathering as much evidence as possible. They will then tally up the costs and damages you’ve accrued from your pedestrian accident.

Once your attorney gathers that information, negotiations for a settlement will begin. Your attorney will present a demand letter outlining the damages they are seeking. The insurance company will then respond with a settlement offer.

Negotiations may go back and forth until both parties reach a mutually agreeable settlement amount. If an agreement cannot be reached through negotiations, the case may proceed to litigation, where a judge or jury will decide on a financial verdict.

If you were hit by a car as a pedestrian, an attorney can be your greatest ally in seeking justice and recovering compensation. They can guide you through the entire legal system and protect your rights.

Attorneys have the resources to conduct a thorough investigation of your pedestrian accident. This includes gathering evidence such as witness statements, surveillance footage, and police reports. They may also call upon accident reconstruction experts to determine how your pedestrian accident occurred.

Plus, they will handle all communications and negotiations with insurance companies. This way, the at-fault driver’s insurance company can’t trick you into accepting a low-ball settlement or place the blame on you.

If a fair settlement can’t be reached with the insurance company, an attorney can take your case to trial. Here, they can present evidence to a judge or jury and advocate for you in the courtroom.

Find a Premier pedestrian accident attorney in your area Premier attorneys have a proven track record of success in recovering damages for injured pedestrians. They can handle the intricacies of the legal process, so you only have to concentrate on getting better.

Many pedestrian accident law firms offer free initial consultations. This will give you the opportunity to discuss the specifics of your case, ask questions, and gauge the attorney's compatibility with your needs. Plus, you won't have to worry about upfront costs or legal fees unless your attorney successfully secures compensation for you. Start building your claim today. Contact a Premier attorney in your area.

Injured? Call Now
Talk to a LAW.COM Premier Attorney today!

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Tell us about your potential case.

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Injured? Speak to a LAW.COM
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1-866-828-0442 or Submit Your Case Form