The estimated population in San Diego, California, is estimated at 1,447,100 people. These people are found on the streets and even on the sidewalks on any given day of the week. Pedestrian accidents can happen for a number of reasons, but they are also often avoidable with the cooperation of those who share the roadways. When accidents do happen, people turn to the San Diego pedestrian accident lawyers they know and trust. TorkLaw helps those in San Diego and the surrounding areas with their pedestrian accident cases to help victims get the compensation they deserve.
Duty of Care and Proving Negligence
San Diego automobile accidents with pedestrians often fall under negligence. For a negligence lawsuit to have any ground in a court of law, the injured pedestrian and their legal counsel must prove:
- The plaintiff has to prove that the defendant failed to provide the proper duty of care in that situation
- Failing to show the proper duty of care caused the injuries to the plaintiff
It is easier for a plaintiff to prove that the defendant failed to show the proper duty of care if they broke laws in the process.
In the state of California, the law automatically presumes that a person failed to show a duty of care if:
- The written law is violated
- The violation of that law resulted in injury
- The injury that was caused is the type of injury that the law was made to prevent
- The victim of the violation of the law was whom it was created to protect
Comparative negligence is used in cases like this in the state of California. Comparative negligence is when the claim is paid based on the percent of blame assessed to each party in the pedestrian accident case. This is also used in car accident cases as well.
Common Causes of San Diego Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrians are those who are on using their feet as a mode of transportation. They may be doing this for health reasons or because they do not have a vehicle as a mode of transportation. Whatever the reason for this, pedestrians have as much right to the crosswalks and sidewalks as anyone else. The most common causes of pedestrian accidents in San Diego include:
- Distracted drivers
- San Diego has many automobiles on the roadway. Sometimes these drivers become distracted while they are on the road. Distracted driving occurs when a driver does not have their full undivided attention on the roadways. Accidents can happen to anyone, and it only takes a split second to happen.
- Unsafe speeds
- The speed a car is going has a severe impact on injuries that can be sustained in an accident up to and including death. Even at the speed limit, severe injuries can occur if a pedestrian accident happens. Response times are often associated with the rate of speed a car is going. If a car is going faster than it should be, the ability to stop will be delayed.
- School Zones
- School zones and crosswalks can be dangerous areas with a high potential for pedestrian accidents. Children are harder to see due to their height. Children are also less likely to know the rules for pedestrians on the road, which can cause them to misinterpret when they should enter a roadway.
- Drunk or drugged drivers
- Alcohol and drugs impair the judgment of drivers. The ability to react is reduced, which causes accidents.
Applicable Traffic Laws for Drivers and Pedestrians
In a perfect world, drivers and pedestrians would share the road, and there would be no accidents. Unfortunately, this is not the case. San Diego has laws that pertain to both drivers and pedestrians. Pedestrian accident lawyers can help determine if the fault was placed correctly in an injury case.
Sometimes it is neither party who is liable in an auto-pedestrian accident. The infrastructure of the crosswalks or roadways could be to blame for causing an accident. If this is the case, then the lawsuit would be taken against the city or the road department for not making the design better.
San Diego still upholds jaywalking laws, which means, if a pedestrian is crossing the road in the middle of the street with a traffic signal less than one block away, they are committing a crime. If a pedestrian does this, then they are not only putting themselves at risk but the driver of the vehicle at risk too. A pedestrian can be found liable in situations where the accident was caused by their committing a crime.
In marked and unmarked crosswalks, the general rule followed is that the pedestrian has the right-of-way. This does not mean that the pedestrian steps into oncoming traffic, expecting everyone to stop for them to cross. A pedestrian cannot create a hazard crossing the roadway. That is why there are usually traffic signals and crosswalk markings to help create a safer environment.
Some pedestrians get to use the roadway and have the same rights as those who are driving vehicles. These pedestrians are often found pushing a cart along the roadways. The drivers on the road are required to treat these pedestrians like they were any other vehicle on the road. They have to maintain a safe distance while driving behind or around the pedestrian. They have to keep the pedestrian safe.
Hiring a San Diego Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
Pedestrian accidents can often end up as a wrongful death lawsuit depending on the circumstances that revolve around the accident. A pedestrian accident lawyer is going to see compensation for the medical bills and lost wages their client has incurred due to the accident. There is also likely to be continued therapy for the pedestrian client, or they may end up completely disabled due to the accident.
No matter what the scenario is for an auto-pedestrian accident, the legal experts at TorkLaw in San Diego are ready to listen to the case. If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident in San Diego or the surrounding areas, call the toll-free number, 888.845.9696, for a free case consultation.