Pedestrians – whether walking, running, jogging, hiking, or merely trying to cross the road – are at risk of being hit and killed by motor vehicles. Pedestrians were actually one of the few groups of road users in Indiana to experience an increase in fatalities over the last several years. Many more – an estimated 69,000 — received injuries that were not fatal. When others are distracted, our attorneys stay focused on your needs.
Anyone who walks on or near a road in Indiana is in danger. However, certain factors make the danger more extreme for some than for others:
- A vast majority (73%) of pedestrian fatalities occur in urban settings, on city streets (including in Indianapolis and other cities throughout Indiana).
- Over two-thirds of the fatalities happen at non-intersections, such as when crossing in the middle of the block or jogging along the shoulder of the road.
- 70 percent of pedestrian fatalities occurred during the hours of 6:00 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.
- Being a pedestrian is especially dangerous for senior citizens and children.
- The fatality rate for male pedestrians is double that for females.
- Almost half of the traffic crashes resulting in the death of a pedestrian involved alcohol, consumer by either the driver or the pedestrian.
If you live in Indianapolis, you know that our streets are dangerous for pedestrians. In 2011 the Indianapolis area saw 294 crashes involving pedestrians, and 29 were fatal, up from the 2010 fatality count of 21.
What causes pedestrian accidents?
A pedestrian can be injured or killed because of his or her own actions or because of the negligence or recklessness of a driver. Sometimes those on foot are in a hurry and choose to cross the street in the middle of the block rather than at a crosswalk, or they cross the street when oncoming traffic has the green light rather than waiting for the light to change so they may safely cross. Children at play dart into the road without stopping to look for traffic; sometimes they are too small to be seen by a truck or bus backing up.
Driver distraction causes many motor vehicle accidents, including those in which a pedestrian is hit. Texting, talking on a call phone, taking eyes off the road to attend to passengers, referring to GPS maps – all of these activities can distract a driver and cause him to run down a person walking or jogging by the road. Many states have laws prohibiting use of a cell phone in a school zone, but these laws are often ignored. All too many drivers try to make it through a yellow light before it turns red, or even blatantly run red lights, endangering pedestrians in the crosswalk.
At McNeely Stephenson, we know how to conduct a thorough investigation into an accident’s causes to determine the best course of action for our injured clients and those who have lost a loved one in a fatal pedestrian accident. Call Mike Stephenson at 855-206-2555 or use our online contact form to arrange a free consultation.
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Pedestrians do have a legal duty to follow the laws which apply to them, such as the Indiana law requiring pedestrians to obey traffic signals. Pedestrians do not have the right of way when the traffic signal is against them (in other words, walking when the sign says “Don’t Walk”).
But many times a driver is found to have been negligent in the operation of his or her motor vehicle, and an Indiana personal injury attorney such as Mike Stephenson can win financial compensation for the victim. Such situations include those in which the driver failed to yield the right of way, ran a red light, rolled through a stop sign, was speeding or driving while drunk or distracted.
Under these conditions, Mike Stephenson’s many decades of experience fighting for the rights of injured citizens of Indianapolis and elsewhere in the state of Indiana can help you collect compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and financial loss. If you have lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident, Mike Stephenson can assist you in the filing of a wrongful death case against the negligent driver.