Pedestrians Deserve the Utmost Care and Protection
We have represented pedestrians hit by motor vehicles in a wide variety of situations. The key to helping clients begins with an intense and prompt investigation into how the accident occurred. Liability is often contested in these cases since the injuries are usually serious and sometimes life-threatening and/or catastrophic.
Often, the defense raised by the vehicle driver relates to a claim that the pedestrian acted in some unsafe manner. For example, the defense may claim the pedestrian was wrongfully in the roadway, either not in a crosswalk (marked or unmarked) or crossing against the traffic light or some other allegation. Other defenses can include a pedestrian claimed to be walking too fast or running into the roadway so quickly that the vehicle driver has no time to react, even if the pedestrian is in a crosswalk.
When the accident occurs at night, the defense often will raise issues about the visibility of the pedestrian, attacking the clothes the pedestrian was wearing and other factors related to whether they would have been visible to the reasonably careful driver. Sometimes this means needing to hire lighting and human factors experts to combat claims of what could or could not be seen.
The point is that even what seems like a straightforward claim (pedestrian hit in a crosswalk by a car) can become very contested and difficult. If the injuries are serious, you should be consulting with a lawyer as soon as possible to protect your rights. It can be critical to do an investigation immediately while the scene of the accident is preserved and witness memories are fresh. You can be sure the insurance company or governmental entity liable for the driver’s negligence will be investigating this accident right away! Don’t let them get to witnesses first if you can help it. It is simply reality that a witness’s memory can be influenced by the person asking the questions, and they may even provide a written statement that is not the whole story.
We investigate in a thorough and ethical way, making sure the true story is preserved and liability is carefully established so you can concentrate on healing from your injuries.
Sometimes, if the injuries are serious enough, it is important to consider other entities that may share some fault for an accident. For example, if a driver who hits you does not have adequate insurance, it may be critically important to evaluate whether there are other entities at fault, including the government entity responsible for designing the roadway to make it safe for pedestrians. It may be that the fault only lies with the driver of the vehicle, but that is something that can be very important to review in the appropriate case. We are experienced in making such reviews and in handling cases involving claims of poor roadway design. Not every attorney who handles auto-pedestrian accidents has experience with roadway design cases.
Start with a free, confidential case review.
If you or someone you love has suffered from an auto-pedestrian accident, SGB is here to help. Let us help you. There is no charge for us to review your potential claim. If we take your case, we do so on a contingency basis, meaning that you don’t pay our fees unless we successfully resolve the claim in your favor. Contact us for a free, confidential case review or call us at 1-800-809-2234.
- $1.2 million settlement involving complex accident reconstruction of bus/pedestrian accident where a bus hit and killed a pedestrian in the middle of the night and drove on. There were no witnesses. Building security cameras from the area and marks left at the scene enabled us (and the police) to put the case together.
- $340,000 settlement for two pedestrians injured while crossing Highway 99 in North Seattle. Accident reconstruction was important in arguing they were in an unmarked crosswalk at a point on Aurora where the lights were spaced far apart. Settlement was against both governmental entities and the driver of the vehicle that hit them.