During 2017, there were more than 1,500 crashes involving pedestrians on Arizona roadways. This number is frightening when you consider more than 1,400 of these crashes resulted in a pedestrian injury. Clearly when we leave our home, the last thing we think about is the potential of being struck by a vehicle while walking. Unfortunately, these statistics provided by the Arizona Department of Transportation tell us we need to be constantly aware of our surroundings and we need to know what to do if we’re struck by a vehicle.
6 Steps to Take After Being Struck
Your initial reaction is going to be fairly normal; you are going to be frightened, and even a little angry. However, do not let this anger get the best of you; the first thing you must make sure of is that you are out of the street and someplace relatively safe. Once you are safe; there are some specific steps you should take immediately:
Related Article: What to Expect in Your Pedestrian Car Accident Settlement
What You Need to Know About Pedestrian Accidents
In nearly all cases, Arizona pedestrians have the right of way at intersections. There are exceptions to this of course, such as crossing against a signal that clearly tells you not to cross. However, if you are partially through an intersection when the signals change, it is up to drivers to be aware of your presence.
In some instances, the driver who struck you will try to show that you are partially responsible for the accident. This is done for very specific reasons, namely Arizona’s comparative fault statutes. Basically, what this means is that any settlement you reach with an insurance company or through a civil lawsuit could be reduced if you were partially at fault.
Stop and think about this: You leave your home for a morning walk, you are passing through an intersection because you have the right of way and a car turns the corner and strikes you. Unfortunately, this happens far more frequently than we think. Drivers are often distracted because of cell phones, GPS or because they are talking to other people in their vehicle and failed to notice you were in the intersection. When a driver is acting negligently, you should be able to get compensation for your injuries, your medical bills and time lost from work. However, you cannot collect on these injuries if you do not take the steps necessary to report the accident, have your injuries evaluate by a physician and make a claim with an insurance company.
Unfortunately, between 2010 and 2017 there were an average of 1,500 crashes annually which involved pedestrians on Arizona roadways. Since pedestrians are no match for a 2,000-pound vehicle, injuries occur in nearly every single incident. Unfortunately, there are also an average of 150 fatalities involving pedestrians annually.
It is important to protect your rights if you are struck in a crosswalk. Make sure you properly document the incident and seek immediate medical attention. Since a pedestrian accident can occur any time, day or night, you should always be aware of your surroundings. However, a careless driver can surprise you at any time so it is even more important to ensure you know what steps to take after you have been struck.