Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported almost 5,000 pedestrian fatalities in just one year across the United States. Research has proven that pedestrians hit by a car traveling in excess of 30 miles per hour suffer the most serious injuries and highest fatalities. Even cars traveling as slow as 10 miles per hour have been known to inflict catastrophic injuries or death. A human body is no match for the sheer weight and acceleration of a motor vehicle.
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
There are many factors that can cause a car to hit a pedestrian, and most of them can be avoided when drivers and pedestrians alike follow safety guidelines.
- Always wear brightly colored clothing or garments with some sort of reflective tape or marking to ensure drivers see you.
- Be aware of surroundings and pay close attention to oncoming traffic.
- Be vigilant in following traffic signals, especially in intersections and crosswalks.
- Maintain a safe distance between the shoulder of the road and the lane of traffic next to it.
- When traveling in pairs or groups, walk in single file.
- Limit walking or riding a bike on main roads to daytime and dusk hours.
- Never change direction or attempt to cross a roadway without first coming to a complete stop and observing your surroundings.
- Never drive while using a cell phone or texting.
- Keep a safe distance of at least four feet between you and the shoulder of the road.
- Come to a complete stop before turning right in an intersection, paying careful attention to pedestrians that may be stepping off a curb.
- Be alert to changes in traffic patterns and shifting lanes.
- Stay alert to pedestrians entering or exiting their cars on the shoulder.
- Slow down when approaching narrow bridges or winding roadways.
- Pay close attention to weather conditions on the road that may cause you to skid or swerve into pedestrian areas or sidewalks.
- Never drive when you are drowsy or intoxicated.
What to do if You are Involved in a Car Accident with a Pedestrian
It is important to stop your car immediately upon impact with a pedestrian. Do not attempt to back your car up or pull over to the side of the road because you could run over the pedestrian lying in the street. Do not attempt to get out of the car unless you are sure that you are uninjured and that it is safe to do so with surrounding road conditions or traffic.
It is important to call the police and ambulance so that the accident scene can be managed safely and all injured victims can get medical help. Pedestrians that are lying on the road or on the shoulder or beyond should not be moved unless they are in immediate danger. Moving an injured victim can cause more harm and possibly result in permanent disability. If the victim is in danger of drowning or coming into contact with a live electrical wire or other imminent danger, caution should be used to protect their head and spine.
When possible, the driver and the pedestrian’s insurance information, the driver’s license number and tag number should be exchanged and the driver’s insurance agency should be contacted as soon as possible. If the situation allows, pictures should be taken of the accident scene, injuries and damage to the vehicle to help in an investigation. Witness testimony and personal information can be a great help in providing necessary details if criminal or civil charges are brought. A full police report should be sent to your insurance carrier as well.
It is wise to consult with a competent and experienced personal injury or car accident attorney when you are involved in a pedestrian accident. Because of the fact that pedestrian injuries can be traumatic and extensive, a qualified car accident lawyer can ensure that your legal rights are protected should a lawsuit result. The quicker you contact your lawyer, the better your chances are for getting valuable information about the car accident that could help in your defense.
Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at Law Offices of Patrick G. Geckle LLC Help Victims Injured in Car Accidents Claim Compensation
If you or someone you know have been involved in a car accident, or are a pedestrian hit by a car, the experienced team of Philadelphia car accident lawyers at Patrick G. Geckle LLC can help you claim compensation you may be entitled to under the law. Call us at 215-735-3326 or complete our online contact form to schedule a consultation today. Our offices are conveniently located in Center City Philadelphia allowing us to serve clients in Philadelphia and Delaware County, Montgomery County, Bucks County and Chester County.