How Is Fault Determined in Louisiana Pedestrian Accidents?

three people walking in a crosswalk

Many cities and towns are, unfortunately, designed with cars in mind, meaning it has grown increasingly unsafe for those who travel on foot to walk around. As a result, pedestrian accidents have skyrocketed, leaving many suffering the impacts left by negligent drivers. If this reflects your circumstances, you should contact an Ouachita Parish, Louisiana personal injury lawyer to explore your legal options. Additionally, the following blog can help you learn why these accidents occur and who can face liability for the damages inflicted.

How Do Pedestrian Accidents Happen?

Pedestrian accidents happen whenever someone traveling on foot is struck by a vehicle. Generally, these occur at intersections, crosswalks, and parking lots, as there are often higher numbers of pedestrians in these locations.

There are several reasons that these accidents can happen. In most instances, driver error is to blame. This could be because the driver was distracted, driving negligently, or failed to yield to the person in the crosswalk. However, pedestrians who do not understand the right-of-way laws can also cause a collision. For example, if the pedestrian “jaywalks” or crosses the road where there is no crosswalk, or steps off the curb when an approaching vehicle is too close to stop safely, they can be deemed liable.

Who Can Face Liability?

To determine who will face liability, investigators must first narrow down the cause of the accident. It’s important to understand that while drivers are typically found at fault for these accidents, pedestrians can also be held liable.

In many instances, the police and first responders to the scene will conduct a preliminary investigation into the accident. For example, they may speak to both the driver and pedestrian to get their account of what happened before taking the statements of witnesses. When possible, dashboard camera footage or local security videos can help determine liability.

If I Was Hurt While Walking, What Should I Do?

If you were injured while walking due to a driver’s negligence, ensuring you take the correct steps to protect yourself is critical. Generally, the first thing you should do is contact emergency services as soon as possible. This allows you to request a police presence at the scene and obtain treatment for medical injuries.

You should also take photos and videos of the accident scene if you are physically able to. Unfortunately, you may find that your injuries require immediate transportation to a hospital, meaning you may not have time to photograph the accident. If this is the case,  you should call a local friend or family member to assist.

Finally, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible during these complex times. Unfortunately, trying to prove liability without legal representation can be incredibly difficult. As such, connecting with a lawyer can help give you the best chance to receive compensation for the injuries you’ve endured. At Breithaupt, DuBos, & Wolleson, LLC, we understand how overwhelming it can be to fight for funds when you are hurt, which is why we are dedicated to helping you during these matters. Call our office today to learn how we can help you.

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