Pedestrians often assume that they are safer when traveling if they are walking and not in a vehicle. Additionally, even in non-vehicle-trafficked spaces, pedestrians assume they are not in danger due to irresponsible actions from themselves or other pedestrians. That being said, this could not be further from the truth.
What are the Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
The reckless actions of oblivious pedestrians lead to serious accidents and injuries every day across America. By knowing what actions typically lead to these accidents, you can more easily protect yourself and others. Here are eight of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents that you should know about:
When you’re in the public sphere while intoxicated, you cannot use proper judgment. Not only does this put you in danger, but it also puts all other pedestrians around you in danger. Sudden decision-making is common for intoxicated people, which can cause other pedestrians and vehicles to make dangerous decisions to counteract your sudden actions. If you’ve been injured due to the reckless actions of an intoxicated pedestrian, you have legal options to consider that can help you recover damages.
2. Poor Visibility
Not all pedestrian injuries occur due to recklessness. When you’re out and about, and it suddenly becomes incredibly dark or foggy, it can be hard to navigate yourself in a fully safe fashion. That being said, if you’re in a public space that does not have proper lighting and are injured due to this condition, you may be able to sue the party responsible for that poor and dangerous lighting setup.
Jaywalking is not only illegal but incredibly dangerous. When pedestrians put their convenience ahead of the safety of others, disaster can strike at a moment’s notice. Jaywalking can cause severe traffic issues, as you’re putting drivers in a scenario where they suddenly have to deal with a traffic hazard that should not exist. By avoiding jaywalking, you can keep everyone around you safe and avoid costly legal fees.
4. Left Turns
Left turns are associated with many car accidents, especially those involving pedestrians. Four-way stops and traffic intersections rely on drivers looking out for pedestrians and other drivers when they turn left. Unfortunately, reckless and selfish individuals cause accidents around left-hand turns every day in America, and drivers and pedestrians find themselves severely injured in these preventable accidents.
5. Unmarked Crosswalks
Pedestrians rely on crosswalks to commute safely and efficiently. Additionally, drivers rely on properly marked crosswalks to understand where a pedestrian might cross a street. When crosswalks are unmarked, chaos can break out, similar to how jaywalking can suddenly disrupt the flow of traffic. If you’re injured due to unmarked crosswalks, the city that failed to maintain these important traffic signals may be held legally responsible.
6. Inclement Weather
Poor weather conditions are responsible for a massive portion of pedestrian-involved injuries in the US every year. High winds, blinding rain, slippery snow, and other weather conditions make it much more difficult for pedestrians to travel safely. For this reason, it’s highly recommended that you wait out the weather as a pedestrian rather than needlessly putting yourself in danger. Doing so can keep you and others safe until the inclement weather passes.
7. Dark Clothing
Especially if you’re traveling at night in a pedestrian space, you need to wear visible clothing. If you wear hyper-dark clothing, you make it harder for both other pedestrians and drivers to spot you. Many people will even wear reflective vests and clothing at night to help ensure they are visible. This is an especially important safety precaution for joggers who enjoy nighttime runs.
8. Distracted Behavior
Just like when you’re behind the wheel, walking around while distracted can lead to dangerous situations. Especially if you’re walking through crosswalks or other high-traffic areas, being distracted can cause you to fall into an otherwise preventable accident. People who talk on the phone using headphones put themselves at incredibly high risk, as they make themselves oblivious to potential hazards in their immediate area. For this reason, you must never block off your hearing when traveling in pedestrian-heavy areas.
Stay Safe During Your Daily Commute
Whether you’re doing your daily commute or simply out on the town, avoiding accidents is largely your responsibility. That being said, if a city, property owner, or another individual pedestrian causes dangerous conditions that lead to you being injured, you have a legal right to seek damages for your suffering.