Pedestrian Accident Attorney
We’ve all heard terrifying stories of pedestrians being struck and killed while simply trying to cross the street. The term pedestrian includes any person who commutes by way of foot, wheelchair, or stroller. Whether someone is walking to work, jogging for exercise, or standing, pedestrians are the most vulnerable road users. Pedestrians are also bicyclists, riding scooters, and engaging in other activities on or near the roadways during which they do not have the physical protection of a motor vehicle. If you or a loved one has been injured in a traffic accident as a pedestrian, you likely have severe injuries and are suffering from extreme mental anguish. You may have insurance companies calling and medical bills piling up. A Houston pedestrian accident lawyer can help you move forward after sustaining injuries caused by the negligence and fault of someone else.
Compared to passenger vehicle occupants, pedestrians are more than 1.5 times as likely to be fatally injured in a car crash on a given trip, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). When a vehicle strikes a pedestrian, it often results in life-threatening injuries or death. Even when a car is traveling at low speeds, when it crashes into a pedestrian, it can cause traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, and serious back injuries.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 6,205 pedestrians were killed in 2019 nationwide while about 76,000 were injured. It’s estimated that every 85 seconds a pedestrian is killed in a traffic crash. Pedestrians age 75 or older are most at risk of injury or death in auto-pedestrian accidents.
About 80% of auto accidents involving pedestrians occur in urban areas. And it should come as no surprise that the largest number of pedestrian fatalities occur on Saturdays and in dark lighting or at night. The majority of Texas pedestrian accidents over the past few years have been a result of:
- Vehicle drivers not watching or seeing pedestrians cross roads.
- Drivers failing to yield to the right-of-way to pedestrians.
- Drivers speeding, making it difficult for them to stop in time for a pedestrian.
- Drivers fail to stop for buses where riders get off.
Pedestrian deaths are continuing to rise according to the Texas Department of Transportation. There were 4,852 collisions in 2020 with 1,211 serious injuries and 731 pedestrian fatalities. The main reason behind this? Pedestrians do not have protective gear when they walk along or cross streets, unlike vehicles that have seatbelts and airbags – not to mention the vehicle body itself – to protect drivers and passengers. This makes pedestrians more susceptible to serious injuries or even death compared to passenger vehicle occupants.
Texas Is One of the Deadliest States for Pedestrians
Based on a report from the National Complete Streets Coalition at Smart Growth America, which assesses pedestrian safety across the country, Houston and El Paso are ranked as the 18th and 20th most dangerous cities for pedestrians. Between 2010 and 2019, the two cities saw 1,513 pedestrian fatalities. Texas cities altogether had 5,308 pedestrian fatalities, making it the 10th most dangerous state for pedestrians.
Houston, which ranks one of the most dangerous cities for pedestrians, is a particularly hazardous place to walk because its streets are designed to prioritize speed over safety. According to the report, there were 1,298 pedestrian fatalities in the Houston area from 2010 to 2019.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Lots of factors can cause or contribute to a pedestrian collision, including:
- The driver drinking alcohol before getting behind the wheel.
- Driving while distracted is the most common factor in auto-pedestrian crashes. Any time a driver is distracted, the risk of a pedestrian crash increases.
- Speeding or driving too fast for weather or road conditions.
- Failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians at crosswalks.
- Failure to see a pedestrian when making a turn at an intersection or when backing up.
- Disobeying traffic signals or laws (e.g., running a red light or stop sign).
Common Auto-Pedestrian Accident Injuries
Pedestrian auto accidents are most likely to occur in densely populated urban areas from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. In most cases, pedestrians are struck by the front of a vehicle. Factors that can increase the severity of injury or likelihood of death include:
- Speed of the vehicle at the point of impact
- Size, type, and height of the vehicle
- Age and weight of the pedestrian
- Vehicle’s point of contact with the pedestrian (e.g., upper versus lower body)
- Location of the accident (e.g., intersection, parking lot, or non-roadway)
Some of the injuries commonly seen in pedestrian accidents include:
- Musculoskeletal injuries, including breaks, sprains, and torn ligaments
- Mild, moderate, and severe traumatic brain injuries
- Neck, back, and spinal cord injuries
- Internal organ injuries
- Pelvic injuries
What Damages Can I Recover in a Pedestrian Accident Case?
Depending on the specific facts of your case, a Houston pedestrian accident lawyer may be able to help you recover compensation for a variety of damages, including but not limited to past and future:
- Medical costs
- Loss of earning capacity
- Physical limitations
- Physical pain
- Mental anguish
Experienced Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
Some pedestrian auto accident cases may be difficult to prove, especially when it involves a hit-and-run. The experienced, award-winning personal injury trial lawyers of The Krist Law Firm, P.C. can help you build a solid case. Having a knowledgeable Houston pedestrian accident lawyer by your side to guide you through the entire legal process will give your claim the benefit of decades of experience handling a variety of motor vehicle-related accidents. We have helped countless accident victims across Texas obtain the compensation they deserve through skilled and knowledgeable legal advocacy.
If you have experienced a pedestrian accident, your injuries may require a significant recovery period while you undergo surgeries, hospitalization, physical therapy, or other rehabilitation. During this time, you may be unable to work, incur medical bills, and worry about how you and your family will deal with such a heavy financial burden.