Our Seattle pedestrian accident lawyers help you recover a fair compensation for injuries you or a loved one has sustained in a pedestrian crash. Pedestrian accidents typically result in serious or fatal injuries when a vehicle collides with a pedestrian. As the accident is largely one-sided, injuries are typically suffered by the pedestrian. In most cases, the negligence of the driver is the key cause of the accident.
Before you file a pedestrian accident compensation claim against the negligent party, it is important to understand the state laws that apply to the case. Here’s a look at the vital statistics for Washington State as well as for Seattle, the state laws, and other aspects of a pedestrian accident claim.
Seattle Pedestrian Accident Statistics
Pedestrian accidents in Washington State have seen an upward trend in the recent years. From 82 pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities in 2014, the number rose to 123 in 2018. In 2014, the total number of serious injuries caused by pedestrian accidents was 360. This number rose to 403 in 2018.
Within the city of Seattle, a decrease in the overall trend of pedestrian injuries and fatalities was noted from 2017 to 2018. During this period, the combined tally for serious injuries and fatalities dropped from 73 to 69.
Washington State Pedestrian Laws
Washington State has a number of laws that govern how pedestrians interact with the road traffic across the state. These laws apply to both pedestrians and the drivers interacting with the pedestrians. Here is a look at these laws.
Yield to Vehicles
As a pedestrian, you are required by state laws to yield the right of way to the vehicles on the road. This applies when you are trying to cross a road outside of designated crosswalks and intersections. You must yield the right to all vehicles on the road and attempt a crossing only when you deem it safe. The liability in such a case lies with you as a pedestrian.
Moving Into Traffic
You must not leave the curb suddenly and enter traffic in such a way that an oncoming driver doesn’t have the chance to stop.
Walking on Roadways
When you are walking on a roadway as a pedestrian, you must use the sidewalk. If a sidewalk is not present, all pedestrians must use the extreme left side of the roadway.
Sidewalks and Crosswalks
When pedestrians are using a sidewalk, a marked crosswalk or an unmarked crosswalk, all drivers must yield the way to them.
Pedestrians must obey all traffic signals and devices on the roads, much like the vehicle drivers. Violation of the traffic signals may be considered a legal infringement.
Driver Due Care
All drivers are required to exercise due care in order to avoid collision with any pedestrian. The use of horn as a warning shall also be used to prevent such collisions.
Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries
Pedestrian accidents typically result in serious or critical injuries to the pedestrians whereas the drivers remain largely unscathed. This is simply because of the nature of vehicle-pedestrian collisions. Pedestrian injuries in such cases usually range from serious to critical or fatal. Here is a look at some of the most common injuries sustained in Seattle pedestrian accidents:
Muscle and tendon injuries. These injuries are not critical although they do result in pain. Muscle or tendon injuries are usually a result of low-speed collisions between pedestrians and vehicles. Depending on the muscle group or location of the tendons, such an injury can take a while to heal.
Head Injuries. When a pedestrian accident results in an impact to the head, this typically results in traumatic brain injuries. Also known as TBIs, these injuries are quite serious and can cause permanent functioning limitations in the victim.
Back Injuries. Like head injuries, back injuries incurred in pedestrian accidents are also quite serious. Back injuries can result in harm to the spine or in worse cases, damage to the spinal cord. This can result in partial or full paralysis of the lower body.
Internal Injuries. Internal injuries may not be immediately visible but they can be very dangerous. Such injuries typically cause internal bleeding that can damage the internal organs or lead to death.
What to Do After a Pedestrian Accident in Seattle?
If you or a loved one has suffered a pedestrian accident in Seattle, it is important to take certain steps. These ensure that you stay safe legally and are able to seek compensatory damages for your suffering. Here’s a look at these steps.
Get Medical Care. In most cases, medical help will reach you after a pedestrian accident. Once you are transported to the hospital and receive medical care, make sure you document the treatment. Depending on the severity of the injuries, you may want to ask a loved one to maintain the medical records.
Report The Accident. Most pedestrian accidents are reported to the police right away. If that is the case with your accident, request a copy of the police report surrounding the incident. If the accident has not been reported, contact the authorities or have a loved one report the accident at the earliest.
Consult Seattle Pedestrian Accident Lawyers: In the wake of a pedestrian accident, a driver may try to pin the blame on you or the insurance company may attempt to pay you less than what you deserve. This is why it is important to hire a qualified attorney soon after the crash.
How Can Seattle Pedestrian Accident Lawyers Help You?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident in Seattle, it is important to hire a good attorney. A qualified lawyer will help you file a compensation claim and demand a fair amount for the losses you have suffered. Here at TorkLaw, our Seattle pedestrian accident lawyers help pedestrian accident victims seek compensatory damages to cover their medical treatment costs, lost wages and other losses. Contact us today to book a FREE one-on-one consultation with our attorneys and discuss your case in person.