Scene of a pedestrian accident. A pedestrian is lying on the ground in front of a car with his shoe in focus.
Pedestrians can face substantial danger out on the streets of Atlanta. Because pedestrians fit a different visual profile than the vehicles most drivers look for when they take to the road, drivers may have a greater likelihood of missing their presence. Furthermore, pedestrians may have a higher likelihood of suffering severe injury when they do end up involved in an accident, since they have little protection from the road around them. If you suffered injuries in an Atlanta pedestrian accident, working with a pedestrian accident lawyer can help you determine who bears liability for your accident and make it easier for you to pursue compensation for your injuries.

Does the Driver Always Bear Liability in a Pedestrian Accident?

Pedestrian safety has been a hot-button issue in Georgia for several years, and many plans have been put in place to help increase overall safety on the road. Drivers may bear heavy consequences when they do cause pedestrian accidents. However, the driver involved in a pedestrian accident does not necessarily always bear liability for the accident. Pedestrians, like drivers, must follow the rules of the road in order to protect themselves and others around them. When a pedestrian violates the rules of the road or engages in dangerous activities, the pedestrian may actually bear liability for the accident.

When Does the Driver Bear Liability in a Pedestrian Accident?

Drivers may bear liability for a pedestrian accident any time they violate the rules of the road in any way. For example, drivers may bear liability if:
  • The driver ignores a pedestrian already in a crosswalk or in the road. Pedestrians generally have right of way in the road, but may not have the right to enter the road until a car has passed.
  • The driver strikes a pedestrian on the sidewalk.
  • The driver ignores a red light or stop sign, particularly when a traffic signal would have given the pedestrian right of way. Drivers must follow the rules of the road in all circumstances, and can bear heavy legal consequences when they do not follow those rules.
  • The driver was speeding and hit a pedestrian due to inadequate time to come to a complete stop.
  • The driver was distracted by something in the vehicle, including a cell phone or talking to another passenger in the vehicle, at the time of the accident. Distraction may substantially decrease the odds that the driver will see a pedestrian in or near the road, which can raise the risk of a devastating accident.
  • The driver was drunk at the time of the accident and hit the pedestrian due to inebriation or other poor decision-making.
In most cases, drivers do bear liability for injuries caused in a pedestrian accident. However, a careful examination of the scene of the accident and the details that led to it will give you a better idea of who likely caused the accident.

What Should You, as a Pedestrian, Do After an Accident?

If you suffer injuries in a pedestrian accident, you may need to take several careful steps to ensure that you can protect your right to compensation.

1. Report the accident immediately.

Never allow the driver that hit you to simply drive away from the scene of the accident. Pedestrian accidents often cause substantial injuries, and you may deserve compensation for your injuries and any losses you sustain. Report the accident to the police so that you have a record of the accident and proof of the driver involved in the accident. Get a copy of the accident report as soon as you can. You may need to review the accident report for accuracy in order to ensure that it does not have any missing details. Make sure that it accurately reflects the date and time of the accident as well as the other party involved. You may need to talk to the Atlanta PD about any problems with your accident report.

2. Seek medical care.

You should always see a doctor after any type of auto accident. You may have injuries that you do not notice at the time of the accident, especially if the rush of adrenaline that often accompanies a serious situation causes you to miss the pain often associated with an injury. By seeing a doctor, you accomplish two main purposes. First, you ensure that you get any needed treatment for those injuries. Second, you ensure that you have a record of when your injuries occurred, which can prove essential to your injury claim. Starting from those initial days after the accident, including your first visit to an urgent care center or emergency room, make sure that you keep up with all your medical bills. Note any co-pay or deductible amounts and include them as part of your claim.

3. Get in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible.

Any time you suffer injuries in an accident, you should get in touch with a lawyer to discuss your right to compensation. Having a lawyer on your side can prove essential, especially in cases like a pedestrian accident, where you may not have clear vehicular damage evidence to help you clearly establish liability. A lawyer can prove incredibly beneficial even in the days immediately after your accident. Frequently, the insurance company will call you soon after the accident to discuss your injuries and potentially issue a settlement offer. Unfortunately, that settlement offer may not include the compensation you really deserve. The insurance company may also pressure you to accept it, or may try to pressure you to accept responsibility for the accident. By working with a lawyer, you can decrease the potential for complications and streamline your claim.

Do You Need a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer?

If you suffered injuries in a pedestrian accident in Atlanta, Georgia, you need to work with a pedestrian accident lawyer to protect your right to compensation. Contact Cambre & Associates today to discuss your pedestrian accident and how much compensation you may deserve.