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Pedestrian Accidents: Not Even Safe While Walking Down the Street

Posted on in Personal Injury

Wisconsin accident attorney, Wisconsin pedestrian accident lawyer, Wisconsin injury lawyerPedestrians swarm the streets of Milwaukee, using their own two legs to get around town. And while automobile accidents are scary events that result in injuries to everyone involved, when they involve pedestrians, they usually result in serious injuries or even death.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 2013, over 4,700 pedestrians were killed and over 66,000 suffered injuries as a result of a motor vehicle accident across the United States. In Wisconsin alone, according to the Department of Transportation in 2013, over 1,270 pedestrians were involved in motor vehicle accidents. Out of those accidents involving pedestrians, 1,231 suffered injuries while 25 lost their lives.

Responsibilities of Pedestrians and Drivers

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation identifies responsibilities of pedestrians and drivers who travel on public roadways, highways and sidewalks. These responsibilities are in accordance with Wisconsin law. Both drivers and pedestrians are simply required to pay attention.

In every situation, the driver of an automobile must yield to pedestrians that cross sidewalks and streets in designated crossing areas. This also includes yielding when a pedestrian is already walking across a street, regardless if they are obeying a green walk signal. Lastly, drivers are not allowed to pass stopped motor vehicles when a pedestrian is crossing the road.

Pedestrians are required to yield to drivers when crossing roadways or highways when there are unmarked crosswalks or no green walk signals. Also, they are required to allow a closely approaching vehicle enough time to yield for a pedestrian and shouldn’t suddenly move into the path of such a vehicle. When walking on a public highway, and no sidewalk is available, the pedestrian is required to walk on the left side of the road.

Who is Responsible?

When a pedestrian is struck by a motor vehicle and suffers injuries as a result, the pedestrian is entitled to recover damages for those injuries if they were caused as a result of someone else’s negligence. Basically, negligence is simply described as someone’s act or failure to act as a reasonable person would in a similar situation, to protect others from foreseeable risks. Establishing someone’s negligence requires showing:
  1. The defendant owed you a legal duty;
  2. The defendant breached that legal duty;
  3. The defendant’s breach caused your injury;
  4. The injury the defendant caused you to suffer was foreseeable; and
  5. That you suffered injuries as a result of the defendant’s breach.

These cases usually focus on the duty of care owed by those involved in the accident. As identified above, both drivers and pedestrians have certain rules of the road they must follow. If you are found to be partly responsible for the accident, over 51 percent, you could be barred from recovering any damages from the driver who caused your injury.

If you or someone you love has been in pedestrian-automobile traffic accident, you may be unsure of what to do next. Depending on the situation, and the statute of limitations, you may have to act quickly to preserve your rights. You should contact an experienced Milwaukee personal injury attorney who can guide you through the process, provide you with a clear vision of your case, and advise you of the best course of action.
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