Pedestrian accidents can result in catastrophic injuries such as fractures, disfigurement, scarring, paraplegia, quadriplegia, coma, traumatic brain injury, tissue damage, lacerations, crushing of limbs, and spinal cord damage. Nothing protects a pedestrian from the force exerted by a vehicle in a collision. All drivers are required to observe the rules of the road related to right-of-way at stop lights, stop signs, and cross walks. Unfortunately, not all drivers abide by these rules. Even slow-moving vehicles can cause great harm. If you were injured in a pedestrian accident, you should consult the Seattle pedestrian accident attorneys of Blair & Kim.Pedestrian Accidents
Many pedestrian accidents are the fault of a driver of a vehicle. An accident may be caused by a driver’s failure to yield the right-of-way, failure to come to a complete stop, failure to stop at a marked crosswalk, failure to stop before turning right on a red light, distracted driving, drunk driving, reckless driving, or speeding.
Pedestrians are often injured at crosswalks. Under Washington law, drivers need to provide pedestrians with the right-of-way within marked or unmarked crosswalks. Crosswalks are locations where one road intersects with another, even when it’s not marked. Sometimes pedestrians have a false sense of security in a crosswalk because they assume a driver will follow the law.Liability
To establish a driver’s liability, you will need to show that the driver acted negligently. In other words, you must establish it’s more likely than not: (1) the driver owed you a duty to use reasonable care, (2) breach of the duty to use reasonable care, (3) causation, and (4) actual damages. All drivers are required to use reasonable care while operating their vehicles. For instance, if a drunk driver ran a red light and hit you in the middle of a marked crosswalk, a pedestrian accident attorney in Seattle may be able to establish that the driver breached his or her duty to use reasonable care.
Sometimes, the government may be partly responsible for a pedestrian accident if insufficient lighting, mistimed traffic lights, poorly maintained crosswalks, confusing signs, missing striping, or broken concrete contributed to the accident.Comparative Negligence
Pedestrians are also required to follow certain Washington laws. For example, RCW 46.61.050 requires pedestrians to follow traffic signals and traffic control devices unless the police or a traffic officer directs otherwise. RCW 46.61.235 provides that no pedestrian or bicycle should suddenly depart from the curb and move into traffic such that a driver can’t stop. Sometimes, the actions of a driver and pedestrian combine to cause an accident.
Washington follows the rule of comparative negligence. Your damages will be lowered by an amount proportionate to your percentage of fault. For example, if the jury believes that you are 50% at fault because you jumped out in front of a car turning right at an unmarked crosswalk, you will only be able to collect half of your damages.
Because an insurer for an at-fault driver may be seeking to reduce the exposure of its insured by shifting the fault to you, it’s important to retain a pedestrian accident lawyer in Seattle before speaking to the at-fault driver’s insurance adjustor.Damages
If you can establish another party’s liability for your injuries, you may be entitled to recover compensatory damages. The purpose of compensatory damages is to put you back in the position you would have been in had the accident not occurred. Tangible and intangible losses you suffered because of a pedestrian accident may be recovered in a personal injury lawsuit. Tangible losses include replacement services, lost wages, medical bills, and out-of-pocket costs. Intangible losses include pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and loss of enjoyment.Hire a Seasoned Seattle Attorney
Pedestrians are vulnerable to catastrophic or even fatal injuries while walking on the sidewalk or crossing streets. Such cases can result in significant damages when a car strikes a pedestrian at high speed, leaving the injured victim with severe, permanent injuries. If you were injured or a loved one was killed in a pedestrian accident, you should discuss the viability of a lawsuit with the experienced Seattle pedestrian accident lawyers of Blair & Kim. We may be able to represent you. Contact us at (206) 622-6562 or complete our online form.