Pedestrians deserve the freedom to walk safely, without having to worry about the carelessness of other drivers. Unfortunately, motorists can be unpredictable. A person on foot does not usually have sufficient protection from the weight and force of a car. A collision with a pedestrian could cause devastating injuries or even death. The costs of these injuries can quickly pile up and leave a plaintiff with significant financial setbacks.
If a negligent driver struck you while you were walking, you may be entitled to substantial financial compensation. Retaining a personal injury attorney is key, and an experienced Athens pedestrian accident lawyer will fight to protect your rights.
Rights and Responsibilities of Pedestrians
Pedestrians are always entitled to unique rights, including the expectation that they can travel safely on sidewalks or through crosswalks. When a driver fails to properly respect the rights of someone on foot, they could face legal consequences. However, pedestrians must also follow their own rules. Concrete examples of legal guidelines for safe walking include:
- Only crossing when signals indicate it is appropriate
- Walking on sidewalks when available
- Walking on the correct side of the road if sidewalks are not available
- Being reasonably aware of their surroundings
If someone is struck by a vehicle while they are following these rules, they could likely pursue monetary damages. In some cases, a manipulative defendant might try and argue that a pedestrian is also responsible for the accident. These situations can become problematic because contributory negligence regulations could bar compensation for the plaintiff. However, a tenacious attorney in Athens can help an injured pedestrian prove that they were walking safely; that they did not cause the accident in question.
What Kinds of Injuries Might a Pedestrian Suffer after an Accident?
If an innocent pedestrian is struck by a careless or distracted driver, they could be left with any number of severe injuries. Common examples of wounds that someone might suffer while walking include:
- Deep cuts or lacerations
- Broken bones or fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Whiplash or spinal cord wounds
- Internal organ damages or catastrophic trauma
- Wrongful death
Unfortunately, any of these severe injuries could impact a plaintiff’s quality of life or put them in debt. A skilled lawyer in Athens could help a pedestrian communicate the intensity of their wounds through a detailed accident claim.
Wrongful Death in Pedestrian Collision Cases
Fatalities are, sadly, rather common when a driver strikes someone on foot. If an innocent pedestrian is killed by a negligent motorist, Alabama Code Section 6-5-410 allows the personal representative for the deceased individual file a wrongful death claim. These actions allow the family of the pedestrian to collect punitive damages, which are additional penalties that intend to punish a defendant for malicious or grossly reckless conduct. Punitive damages apply, for instance, if a drunk driver hit and injured a pedestrian.
Wrongful death claims can be complicated to pursue, but a seasoned attorney in Athens could help a family take advantage of this option if they lost a loved one in an unexpected pedestrian accident.
Retain an Athens Pedestrian Accident Attorney for Additional Help
If you were impacted by a pedestrian accident, your case deserves the attention of a dedicated attorney. Submitting a valid claim requires adhering to specific rules, so legal representation could boost your chances of a positive case outcome. Fortunately, an Athens pedestrian accident lawyer could be the ally you need. A resourceful team member could protect your integrity and help you get back on your feet. Call the office today to learn more about your options.