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Understanding the seriousness of pedestrian accidents

While winter is still making an appearance across the nation, residents in Connecticut and elsewhere have experienced sure signs that spring is coming. As a result, more and more people tend to spend time outside whenever they can. But whether it is a cold winter day or a humid summer afternoon, many people rely on their own two feet as a form of transportation. Because of that, pedestrians are seen year round on city sidewalks, shopping centers, parking lots and residential areas.

While walking is a healthy and effective way to get around, it is also a form of transportation that carries with it many risks. Many pedestrians are walking on or next to roads where vehicles frequent. Even more so, pedestrians are likely to cross the road at a crosswalk at some point in their commute. A safe route does not only rely on a pedestrian being cautious of vehicles but also relies on motorists following the rules of the road, being attentive and taking precaution in areas where pedestrians frequent.

Based on 2014 statistics, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that 4,884 pedestrians were killed in a collision involving a motor vehicle. That means that more than 12 people each day of the year are killed in a pedestrian-car crash. Although the number of fatal pedestrian accidents decreased from the rate in 2001, there are still a high number of pedestrians injured each year in these collisions. Roughly 65,000 pedestrians suffered an injury in an accident involving a motor vehicle.

There are many causes of a pedestrian accident, and sometimes both a pedestrian and a motorist could be assigned some liability in a crash. However, when a negligent driver is at fault, investigation often finds that it is due to distractions such as texting, recklessness like speeding or intoxication.

Those involved in a pedestrian crash are likely to suffer serious injuries. This can make it difficult for a victim to recover completely or even return to his or her normal life. Thus, it is important to understand the rights afforded to victims, such as filing a personal injury suit to recover damages.

Source: Pedbikeinfo.org, "Pedestrian and Bicyclist Crash Statistics," accessed March 11, 2017

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