rolling meadows pedestrian accident lawyerWalking down the street instantly gives you less physical protection compared to traveling by car. As a pedestrian, you are one of the most vulnerable users of the road. October happens to be Pedestrian Safety Awareness Month. So whether you are out trick-or-treating or rushing to catch a bus to work in Arlington Heights, if you have sustained a personal injury, you have rights.

Legal Protections for Pedestrians

The number of people struck and killed while walking reached a historic high in 2020. Nationwide, an average of 18 pedestrians were killed every day. In Illinois, pedestrian deaths jumped nearly 14 percent in the first year of the pandemic, with more than 800 fatalities recorded between 2016 and 2020 according to a new report.

Drivers need to learn to share the roads with pedestrians and increase their awareness of people on the streets. There are situations in which a pedestrian has the right of way, meaning that if a car were to strike you, the driver of the vehicle would be at fault for the collision. If you are hit by a car, these are some legal protections in your favor:

  • A pedestrian can file a lawsuit for injuries sustained after being hit by a car.

  • A pedestrian who has auto insurance may be covered by his or her uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in the event of a hit-and-run or an accident involving an uninsured driver.

Can a Pedestrian Be to Blame?

Pedestrians can be found to be at fault for causing car accidents. Just like drivers, they need to abide by specific traffic laws to ensure their safety. Pedestrians should follow the rules of the road and keep the following top of mind:  

  • Sidewalk – If there is a sidewalk, a pedestrian should use it. If one is missing, walk along the shoulder facing oncoming traffic.

  • Crosswalk – Pedestrians have the right of way, but there are some limitations. Pedestrians should abide by traffic signals and use crosswalks. If you do not, you could be held liable if there is an accident.

  •   Jaywalking – It is against the law for pedestrians to walk into the path of moving cars to cross the road. If there is no crosswalk, pedestrians should yield the right of way to vehicles that pose imminent danger.

Children and Elderly Face a Higher Risk of Pedestrian Deaths

People 65 years and older account for 20 percent of all pedestrian deaths in the United States. Unfortunately, many of them are in wheelchairs or using canes or crutches at the time of the accident. Equally disheartening is the fact that in 2020,  one in five children under the age of 15 killed in car crashes were pedestrians. The following are the leading factors for such accidents:

  • Distracted drivers due to touch screens and texting while driving

  • Speeding in residential areas and near schools

  • 77 percent of pedestrian accidents occur at night

  • 47 percent of the fatal pedestrian accidents involved alcohol use by the driver or the pedestrian

Contact a Rolling Meadows Personal Injury Attorney 

If you or a family member is a victim of a pedestrian accident know that at Newland & Newland, LLP we have more than 60 years of combined experience. Call [[phone]] for a free consultation with an Arlington Heights personal injury attorney to review your case. At [[title]] we understand that pedestrian accidents can occur in various ways and we are here to protect your rights. 

 

Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-1002

https://www.ilsos.gov/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a112.pdf

https://smartgrowthamerica.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/Dangerous-By-Design-2022-v3.pdf

https://www.trafficsafetymarketing.gov/sites/tsm.gov/files/2022-09/THE%20ABSOLUTE%20FINAL%20Pedestrian%20Toolkit%20Layout_20220901.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/transportationsafety/pedestrian_safety/index.html

 

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