It doesn't matter if you're walking, jogging or riding your bike, there is a chance you're doing so in close proximity to motor vehicles. As long as you understand the risks and the steps you can take to prevent an accident, each of these enjoyable -- as well as practical and environmentally-friendly -- pastimes can be enjoyed for the reasons you pursue them.
As you learn more about the common causes of pedestrian-vehicle accidents, you'll find it easier to adjust your approach to enhance your safety. Here are some of the most common factors contributing to driver negligence:
- Distracted driving, such as when a driver is texting when navigating a crowded city street
- Failure to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks
- Disobeying traffic signals, such as speeding through a red light or rolling through a stop sign
- Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or prescription medication
- Disregard for traffic conditions, such as during rush hour
- Disregard for inclement weather
As a pedestrian, you hope every driver is doing whatever they can to maintain a high level of safety.
While you hope for the best, there are steps you can personally take to prevent trouble:
- Watch for drivers who are not paying attention to the road or following the law
- Never ignore a "don't walk" signal at an intersection
- Only cross the road at designated crosswalks
- Don't dart into traffic
It's your responsibility to exercise reasonable care in regard to your own safety. This doesn't guarantee your safety, but it will definitely give you more peace of mind.
What to do after a pedestrian-car accident
You don't have much protection as a pedestrian. So, if a vehicle strikes you, there's a good chance you'll suffer a serious injury, ranging from broken bones to a concussion.
Here are the steps to take if you're part of a pedestrian-car accident:
- If possible, move out of traffic
- Don't attempt to move too far from the scene
- Call 911 (or ask a witness to do so for you)
- Follow the treatment plan outlined by your medical team
- Learn more about the cause of the accident, such as by reviewing the police report
By taking these steps, you're putting your health and well-being above all else. You're also putting yourself in position to protect your rights, while seeking compensation for your injuries caused by the negligent driver.