As a pedestrian, you often think about the steps you can take to avoid trouble, such as being struck by a motor vehicle. Even if you do your best to remain safe, another person could make a mistake that results in serious injuries.
Understanding the most common causes of pedestrian accidents will go a long way in helping you adjust your approach when walking, jogging, running or bicycling.
- Distracted driving: If a person is not paying attention to the road, clearly, there's a greater chance they'll cause an accident.
- Speeding: The faster a person drives the more difficult it is to stop in a timely manner in the event of an emergency.
- Disregard for weather conditions: Certain weather conditions call for a change in driving style. For example, wet weather leads to longer stopping times. Sun glare makes it difficult to see the road ahead and pedestrians.
- Driving under the influence: Drugs, alcohol and prescription drugs can all impair a person's ability to drive safely.
- Disregard for traffic conditions: During rush hour, for instance, there may be more people crossing the road. Drivers should adjust their driving style to enhance the safety of pedestrians.
These are the types of mistakes that drivers often make that lead to a pedestrian accident. You can watch for people making these mistakes, but you can't stop them from doing so.
Here are some of the things you can personally do to enhance your safety:
- Cross the street in crosswalks and nowhere else
- Never dart into traffic
- Cross the street when the "walk" signal tells you to do so
- Make eye contact with drivers
It may be difficult to get into the habit of doing these things, but each one will help keep you safe as a pedestrian.
If you are part of a pedestrian-car accident, you need to receive immediate medical treatment. Even if you think you can walk away from the scene, it's not a good idea. You don't have any protection, so even a low speed accident can cause serious injury, such as broken bones and concussion.
Once you receive treatment, review the police report and other evidence to better understand the cause of the accident. This will help you decide what to do next in regard to seeking compensation and holding the negligent party responsible.