Liability in Fort Worth Pedestrian Accident Cases
Most accidents occur due to the reckless and careless actions of another. When a motor vehicle hits a pedestrian, they could be held liable for damages. An experienced pedestrian accident lawyer could help the injured party seek compensation for their damages, such as loss of enjoyment of life, pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional trauma.
In a pedestrian accident, a person needs to hire a pedestrian accident attorney to help determine who is truly at fault. A pedestrian accident lawyer can fight for justice and help you seek the compensation you need, so you do not have to pay out-of-pocket for the damages caused by the crash.
Proving the Driver’s Liability
For either party to prevail in a car accident case, it is necessary to prove that the driver’s negligence or recklessness was the cause of the injuries and property damage. A driver who violates a speed limit before the crash is often considered negligent per se, meaning strictly by operation of law because the law is intended to promote safety and avoid the kind of injuries that occurred. When a driver commits a traffic violation, that is a breach of the driver’s duty, which helps place the liability on the driver.
However, if the accident occurred because of a non-traffic-related event, such as faulty brakes, a speeding driver may not be found negligent for causing the accident.
When the driver is found to be distracted by a cellphone or something similar, they might not have much of an argument for comparative negligence on a pedestrian because it is clear they were distracted. When an individual operates a motor vehicle, they are held to a high standard of safety while traveling on the roadways.
Can The Injured Pedestrian Be Partially Liable For a Crash?
Contributory negligence may be applied when the plaintiff acted in a negligent manner that contributed to their accident. In a pedestrian accident case, there might be disputed evidence about whether the pedestrian was in the crosswalk or not, whether there was a “Walk” or “Do Not Walk’ sign, and whether the pedestrian was distracted.
When both parties are at fault, the individual making the claim has to be less than 50 percent at fault to be able to recover compensation for damages. If they are found to be over 50 percent at fault, they may be ineligible to recover compensation for damages.
Determining Pedestrian Fault
To determine if the pedestrian is involved, some cases involve witnesses that observed the accident. Other times, evidence from traffic and surveillance cameras is used. These and other pieces of evidence provide the courts with enough data to determine whether the pedestrian is at fault.
A pedestrian might be found responsibly negligent after a pedestrian accident if they were:
- Jaywalking or crossing in the middle of the street outside of a crosswalk
- Crossing against the traffic signal, such as in the crosswalk but against the red “Do not Walk” command
- Entering a street or highway while intoxicated
- Walking along highways, bridges, or crossways where pedestrians are prohibited
When a person is walking in traffic or by the road in an electronic age, they may be focusing their attention on a phone or listening through headphones. Sometimes, their distraction covers up the traffic sounds and other auditory impacts the person should hear when walking, such as someone honking a horn or bicycle rider shouting.
There are other items to pay attention to, such as crosswalk signs and red or green lights. The individual may not see these when they are only paying attention to their phone or device. Their distraction could cause an accident putting the liability on the pedestrian’s failure to follow their duty of care.
How a Pedestrian Accident Attorney Could Help
Attorneys work to establish liability by interviewing the pedestrian, getting the police report, obtaining pictures of the scene, and gathering witness statements. The lawyer also gets the light sequence information from the traffic engineer department, obtains Google Earth pictures, and visits the scene of the accident with the injured person to help determine liability in pedestrian accident cases. Call today to learn more about liability in Fort Worth pedestrian accident cases and how an attorney could help.