How to Avoid Becoming a Pedestrian Accident Statistic
If you are not paying attention while crossing the street in Austin these days, you may become one of the more than 70,000 pedestrians injured annually in a pedestrian-automobile accident. Unfortunately, more than 5,000 of those pedestrians injured died as a result of their injuries. At Briggle & Polan, PLLC, we specialize in personal injury lawsuits, including wrongful death lawsuits. We can help you get the financial compensation you deserve if as a pedestrian you were harmed by a moving vehicle. But because we believe strongly in helping prevent accidents before they happen, we’d like to offer you some effective ways to stay safe as a pedestrian in and around Austin these days.
Texas Law and Pedestrians
The Texas Transportation Code contains a specific section devoted to guidelines affecting pedestrians and their safety. There are several rules that dictate safe pedestrian behavior in relation to today’s motor traffic. Pedestrians must walk on sidewalks whenever they are available rather than walk out in the street. At the traffic light, pedestrians must obey all walk signs and proceed only when the walk sign is lighted. Pedestrians are also required to stay to the right of crosswalks.
At a crosswalk that has no traffic signal or other traffic light, vehicles are required to yield the right of way to pedestrians who are on the half of the road in which the driver is traveling, as well as giving right of way to pedestrians approaching from the other half of the road who are in close enough proximity to their vehicle to be harmed. Under Texas law, both pedestrians, as well as drivers, must exercise due caution so that neither come to any harm.
Who Has Liability in a Pedestrian Accident?
Of course, in a perfect world, neither pedestrians nor drivers always follow the rules to keep themselves safe. If a pedestrian is injured in an encounter with a car, the driver may be liable for the pedestrian’s injuries. Negligence on the driver’s part can be proven in one of three ways. The pedestrian was struck while crossing at a marked crosswalk with the light, the driver failed to stop to allow you to cross safely, or if the driver breached his duty by causing an accident by not stopping at the crosswalk.
Just as pedestrians are expected to cross at marked crosswalks while obeying the traffic signal, drivers have a duty to drive with responsible care. Drivers should avoid distractions such as talking on their phone, they should obey all traffic signals, they may not drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and they must be paying attention to road conditions, yielding the right of way to pedestrians in crosswalks.
Legal Recourse for Injured Pedestrians
If you were injured as a pedestrian by a driver of any type of motor vehicle, we encourage you to contact Briggle & Polan, PLLC, to take advantage of our experienced personal injury attorneys. We have a long history in winning pedestrian accident cases and representing clients who have been harmed while out walking by a distracted or careless driver. Pedestrian accident cases can be complicated, but we can help you obtain the financial compensation you deserve for any pedestrian accident injuries you sustain. Contact us today for a free consultation at (512) 400-3278.