Due to the fragile nature of the human body and the speed with which motor vehicles move, pedestrians are highly susceptible to serious injuries when involved in road accidents.
Generally, such accidents occur for several reasons. Oftentimes, driver error is at the root of the issue – drivers may not be paying attention to their surroundings or driving too fast. Road design can also play a role in how safe it is for pedestrians. Other factors, such as lighting and visibility conditions, could also contribute to the likelihood of an accident. This article explores the common causes of pedestrian accidents in North Carolina and how these incidents can be prevented.
This is actually a leading cause of traffic accidents in general, and pedestrian collisions are no exception. Drivers take their eyes off the road for seconds at a time, which is all it takes for someone to step into the street without looking or make an unexpected turn into oncoming traffic. Distracted driving can take many forms, from talking on the phone to fiddling with the radio, to texting or using social media. Drivers should always be aware of their surroundings and drive defensively, as pedestrians may unexpectedly step into the road without looking for oncoming traffic.
Driving Under the Influence
Whenever a driver gets behind the wheel under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they are not only putting their own lives at risk but also others on the road. Driving while intoxicated can greatly reduce a person’s reaction time and ability to make sound judgments in high-stress situations. This is especially dangerous for pedestrians, who have little protection against a fast-moving vehicle.
Sometimes, it’s as much the pedestrian’s fault as it is the driver’s fault. For example, jaywalking or not following traffic signals can put pedestrians at greater risk of getting hit by a motorist. One way to reduce the risk of getting hit as a pedestrian is to always use crosswalks and follow traffic signals. Additionally, pedestrians should make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them, as this will help ensure that the motorist sees them in time to react accordingly.
When to Contact an Attorney
Different scenarios may warrant the need for legal representation, such as a driver who was clearly at fault but does not want to take responsibility for the accident. In these types of cases, it may be beneficial to speak with a pedestrian accident lawyer at Riddle & Brantley about what your next steps should be. Overall, North Carolina is a “fault” state when it comes to determining who is responsible for a pedestrian accident. This means that the at-fault party may be required to pay compensation, including medical expenses and lost wages, to anyone injured as a result of their negligence.
While these are just some of the leading causes of pedestrian accidents in North Carolina, the best way to prevent these incidents is by following traffic laws and being always aware of your surroundings. If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident, it may be beneficial to speak with an experienced attorney to help you seek the compensation you deserve.
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