According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 5,987 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in the U.S. in 2016. Pedestrians are at a much higher risk of being killed or seriously injured in a crash than passengers in a vehicle. Accidents can happen at any moment, so it is incredibly important for both pedestrians and drivers to be cautious.
Pedestrian accidents can occur in large city areas, but more residential areas like Oxon Hill are not immune from these incidents either. If you have been the victim of an accident caused by someone else and are looking to file a lawsuit, seek out a committed pedestrian accident lawyer like those at The Lapidus Law Firm.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrians tend to have right-of-way when it comes to traffic laws. However, this does not mean that they can avoid being held liable for an accident. A pedestrian accident can occur because of multiple reasons.
The driver may be responsible if they are:
- Driving while distracted (texting, eating, or doing any activity that will take their attention away from the road)
- Ignoring traffic laws and signals
- Driving a faulty vehicle
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Not yielding to passengers that have the right-of-way
A pedestrian may be responsible if they are:
- Crossing highways or busy intersections that do not have a crosswalk
- Ignoring traffic lights and signals
- Texting while crossing the street
- Wearing dark clothing while walking/jogging at night
- Abruptly crossing or jumping in front of a vehicle
Pedestrian Accident in Oxon Hill
Last Fall, a man was changing his tire on the outer loop of I-495 at St. Barnabas Road in Oxon Hill around 2 a.m. when he was struck by a vehicle. The man died on the scene. Police questioned the driver of the vehicle that hit the man, and they suspected that she was under the influence of alcohol.
If that driver was later determined to be under the influence, she would likely be held liable for the accident. However, her defense could involve contributory negligence, which, in some cases, holds the injured partially responsible for their accident as well.
What to do If You Are a Pedestrian Hit by a Car
Before you do anything else, you must seek medical attention if you are struck by a car. Pedestrians do not have the same protection that passengers of a vehicle have when they are in an accident. A direct impact from a car can be fatal or lead to very serious injuries.
Even a low-speed crash can cause serious problems, and even if you believe you have little to no symptoms, your health and safety come first. Seek medical attention promptly!
In addition to safety, seeking medical attention directly after your accident can help you significantly if you file a lawsuit. Calling an ambulance will prompt the filing of a police report, and you will have formal documentation of your injuries that can prove favorable when you file your lawsuit. Insurance adjusters also may see the delay of treatment as an excuse to reduce your settlement claim.
And perhaps just as important as the above tips: never assume you will be held liable for your pedestrian accident! At the very least, let an experienced lawyer review your case at a free, no obligation consultation and let them decide if there is a chance of you being awarded a fair and reasonable settlement.
Pedestrian Accident Lawyer in Oxon Hill
If the attorneys at The Lapidus Law Firm accept your case, know that the priority will be to help you receive a fair and reasonable settlement for your injuries. Give us a call at (301) 852-7500 for a free consultation. We are here to help.