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Pedestrians Have To Watch Out For Negligent Motorists
Not every pedestrian accident is straightforward in terms of whose fault the accident was. Sometimes it is partially both party’s fault due to the circumstances surrounding the event. To give an example, bad road conditions or obstructions in the road may cause the driving conditions to be much worse than a normal sunny day which means that both drivers and pedestrians must take more caution than usual.
Pedestrians have a duty to not put themselves in front of moving vehicles and must give drivers even more room to safely operate their vehicle when bad road conditions are present. Sometimes these situations bring about accidents that mean both parties are partially at fault for the accident however, if you as the pedestrian are less than 50% at fault for the accident, you can still pursue compensation for any damages incurred when filing a pedestrian accident claim.
Common Causes Of Pedestrian Accidents
The most common cause of pedestrian accidents is driver negligence. Meaning the driver wasn’t paying attention while driving, drunk driving, distracted driving or disobeying traffic laws. Malfunctioning vehicles and poor road conditions can also be a major factor in pedestrian accidents such as swerving to miss a pothole and hitting someone or icy roads that cause a driver to slide into a pedestrian in a crosswalk.
There are many different driver faults that can cause accidents, but pedestrians also play a major role. If you are crossing the street illegally, then you may be partly at fault for any accidents that happen due to your actions. When drivers aren’t expecting pedestrians to be in the road, it can startle the driver and cause unnecessary reactions that cause the driver to make a mistake. Also, crossing a street too slowly and still being present in the crosswalk after the “Walk” sign has gone away, drivers could have a green turn light that tells them to go and not realize that there is a pedestrian still crossing. This happens a lot in major cities with a lot of foot traffic.
Getting Compensation For Your Injuries
If you were a pedestrian that was struck by a motor vehicle, you probably have medical bills to deal with, lost wages from missing work, overdue bills because of missing work, lifelong injuries that will affect you forever or many other unfortunate things. This can cause serious financial damage to your life and if you aren’t the one at fault, then you shouldn’t have your life ruined over it.
By hiring an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer from Rector Stuzynski LLC, you can be sure that you are going to get an expert defense that is backed by evidence and accident reconstruction professionals so that we can go to court and fight for maximum compensation for your inconveniences. This can mean suing the insurance company involved or the at-fault driver directly if they didn’t have insurance at the time of the accident. We will fight to get compensation for any monetary costs incurred as well as any other damages that were done from mental or emotional traumas and more.
Is Your Accident Claim Valid?
Knowing if your pedestrian accident claim is valid, meaning you will be able to get a settlement for your injuries, is the first step in determining if your case is worth moving forward with. Valid claims have 4 common parts involved, and are the same as any negligence action. First is the Duty Of Care which means you or the other party has a responsibility to act a certain way that is safe for the other people around you. In terms of pedestrian accidents, this means as a driver you need to obey all traffic laws and watch out for pedestrians when driving, especially in high foot traffic areas such as Downtown Pueblo. For pedestrians, this means you need to obey all local laws such as not jaywalking, staying on the sidewalks and waiting for crosswalk signals before crossing the street to name a few.
How Long Will It Take To Get A Settlement?
If one party does not agree with the compensation request at all, then your claim could go to trial which can drag the process out for a much longer time. Luckily, the law is mostly straightforward with these types of things and lawyers will oftentimes be reasonable when the evidence is clear; however, many times insurance companies are not so lenient on their negotiations. With that being said, most pedestrian accident cases are settled without having to go to trial so in these cases it may only take weeks to a few months to fully settle after the injured person completes medical treatment. But if the case goes to trial you can expect the process to take at least another year before a settlement is reached. Your Pueblo pedestrian accident attorney will be able to get a good idea of how it should play out once they have all of the evidence and then give you a ballpark estimate on timelines.
How We Prove Liability After An Accident
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How Much Compensation Could You Receive?
Keep in mind however, that the ultimate settlement amount depends upon the amount of available insurance coverage. In Pueblo, a driver only needs to carry $25,000 in bodily injury liability insurance to comply with the law. That is rarely enough to fully compensate a pedestrian who is hit by a car while walking. That’s why it’s always a good idea to carry uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage on your own car insurance policy. This is a special kind of coverage that you pay a premium for that protects you in the case of an accident if the at-fault driver does not have adequate coverage to meet your needs. We always recommend that people carry as much uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage as they can afford. If you have questions about this type of coverage, call our office or your insurance agent. Often times it is less expensive than people think, and it can be the difference between getting a minimal settlement or receiving full and just compensation for injuries if you are ever in a bad accident.
How To Avoid Pedestrian Accidents As A Driver
As a motorist, it can be very hard to see pedestrians sometimes, especially when there are visual impairments such as trees, cars, bushes, buildings and other things that may be blocking your line of sight. Pedestrians are also much smaller than cars and less prevalent on the roads so we don’t look for pedestrians as much. This leads to serious accidents that can leave the pedestrian with catastrophic injuries so here are some tips to avoid these types of situations.
Double check for pedestrians in the roadway when turning left or right in your vehicle as this is one of the most common times for accidents to occur, especially at night. Pay extra attention in heavy foot traffic areas such as Downtown Pueblo as pedestrians can pop out from around a corner very quickly. Watch carefully for pedestrians crossing the street even when not at an intersection and also check for people opening their car doors on the side of the road.
Statute Of Limitations
In Pueblo, you have a limited time to file a lawsuit when involved in a pedestrian accident. The statute of Limitations requires that you file your claim within 3 years of the incident happening. If you were struck by a government vehicle, you only have 182 days and you actually have to notify the branch that was responsible before filing your lawsuit. Don’t wait until the last minute to file as your lawyer will need time to get a case together for you. The sooner you get your case started the better, so don’t hesitate to give us a call today for a free case evaluation.
Staying Compliant When Crossing Roads
In Pueblo, pedestrians have rules to follow as well as other drivers. To make sure you are aware of these laws, here are a few helpful tips. All drivers must use caution to avoid collisions with pedestrians on the roadways however, pedestrians also have to obey any traffic control devices and signs applicable to them at the time unless specifically instructed otherwise by a police officer. When crossing the street outside of a crosswalk, pedestrians must yield to drivers as they always have the right of way when no crosswalk is present.
When a pedestrian is at a light and the “Don’t Walk” sign is illuminated, pedestrians are required to remain on the sidewalks and out of the roadway as drivers have the right of way at that time. While the “Walk” sign is illuminated, drivers must give the right of way to pedestrians who are in the crosswalk even if the driver has a green light. These decisions are made quickly and not always with complete regard to the laws.
Drivers also may not have seen you as a pedestrian crossing the street as people are much harder to spot than cars and can appear out of nowhere if the driver’s line of sight was blocked by a building, sign, tree, parked car or other obstruction. This is a very common thing in downtown areas due to the heavy foot traffic and the limited visibility at corners and intersections.
It is especially dangerous to be crossing busy roads at night when it is dark outside. Many intersections are not well lit and it can be very hard to see pedestrians at night when other vehicle headlights are already shining in the driver’s eyes, so make sure to take extra caution in times where visibility is drastically reduced. Wearing reflective clothing while walking at night is recommended, even more so if walking on roads without sidewalks at night.
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Areas We Serve
We serve clients injured in pedestrian accidents anywhere throughout the state of Colorado, but we focus on residents of these areas: Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs, Fountain, Briargate, Monument, Black Forest, Pueblo, Canon City, Larkspur, Security-Widefield, Peyton, Falcon, Calhan, Castle Rock, Teller County, El Paso County, Elbert County, Park County, Douglas County and beyond.
At Rector Stuzynski LLC, we help injury victims all over the state of Colorado. Here is a detailed list of the areas we serve:
We also serve clients injured in the following zip codes: 80907, 80909, 80918, 80917, 80931, 80932, 80933, 80934, 80935, 80936, 80937, 80941, 80942, 80946, 80947, 80949, 80950, 80960, 80962, 80977 ,80995 ,80997 80901, 80912, 80904, 80915, 80905, 80910, 80923, 80922, 80919, 80920, 80916, 80939, 80914, 80951, 80924, 80927, 80938, 80906, 80840, 80829, 80902, 80809, 80841, 80911, 80908, 80929, 80819, 80921, 80925, 80132, 80926, 80913, 80863, 80817, 80831, 80133, 80930, 80860, 80814, 80813, 80118, 80106, 80928, 80866, 80816, 80808, 80104, 80116, 81008, 80864, 80135, 81240, 81007, 80109, 81290, 80107, 80108, 80425, 81215, 81221, 80117, 80827, 81212, 80134, 80835, 81003, 80131, 81226, 81001, 80138, 80125, 81002, 81009, 81010, 81011, 81012, 80124, 81244, 80126, 80820, 80130, 80163, 80433, 80129, 80833, 80112, 80832, 81025, 81005, 81223, 81006, 80470, 80127, 80122 and beyond.