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Most Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in Pennsylvania

common causes of pedestrain accidents

Pedestrian accidents are unfortunately something that can happen and the resulting injuries can be devastating. Pedestrians account for nearly half of all traffic fatalities in the United States. In Pennsylvania, 145 pedestrians were killed by drivers in 2020, ranking the 15th highest in the country. Not every pedestrian accident leads to death but they can cause serious injuries.

It is important to understand the causes of pedestrian-vehicle accidents so that we can prevent them from happening again.

Causes of Pedestrian Accidents

Common accidents involving pedestrians, or people on foot, include:

  • Distracted drivers
  • Left-handed turns
  • Unmarked crosswalks
  • Impaired driving
  • Speeding
  • Rolling Stops
  • Improperly installed or defective lights
  • Failure to slow in school zones
  • Distracted or pedestrian negligence

While some car accidents aren't avoidable, many of them are. It is important for drivers to pay full attention while in the car, but also important for pedestrians to pay attention to their surroundings.

7 Tips For Avoiding a Pedestrian Accident

Pedestrian injuries are often preventable. If you want to reduce your risk of being involved in a pedestrian accident, then you should take some precautions. Here are the top five things you should avoid when walking around the streets.

1. Avoid crossing the street without looking both ways. This is one of the biggest mistakes that people make when they walk. They assume that because there’s no cars coming from their right and left sides, it must be safe to cross the road. However, this isn’t always true.

2. Don’t wear headphones while crossing the street. It may seem like a good idea to listen to music while you’re walking across the street, but doing so can actually increase your chances of getting hit by a vehicle. Loud music especially, or noise-canceling headphones, can block the sound of cars coming.

3. Don't jaywalk. While it is not necessarily illegal in Pennsylvania, pedestrians have a duty to act in a safe manner. In fact, if a pedestrian is crossing a roadway at any point other than a sidewalk, they are to yield to all vehicles. Sometimes a vehicle can come up quickly, so it is best to only cross at sidewalks.

4. Avoid crossing at an intersection against the light. Many people think that since there aren’t any vehicles approaching from their side, it’s okay to just keep walking straight through the intersection. Unfortunately, this can lead to serious injury.

5. Don't ignore red lights. When you see a sign indicating that it’s illegal to cross the street, don’t ignore it. Instead, wait until the signal turns green before you start walking.

6. Avoid distractions when crossing the street. Texting and calls can both be distracting for pedestrians and limit the sight of oncoming traffic.

7. Don’t assume drivers are paying attention. While pedestrians have the right of way in crosswalks, driveways, alleys, and building entrances, it doesn't mean that drivers are on the lookout for pedestrians.

Some other tips for avoiding being hit by a car while walking includes staying on the curb, not walking too close to parked cars, and avoiding walking in the middle of the street.

It is also important to teach children these lessons, as riding bikes, running across a street or not paying attention while crossing a road can seriously hurt them. Children are much smaller than adults making them harder to see by drivers. They are also more fragile than adults, so injuries can be much more serious.

How A Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Can Help

A pedestrian accident can be scary and may result in a number of different injuries, or even death. At the Justice Guardians accident law firm, experienced pedestrian accident lawyers represent victims and fight for compensation. Justice Guardians attorneys fight for compensation to cover pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and other possible economic damages. Negligence will need to be proven so hiring an experienced attorney can help guide you through the process while collecting witness statements and filing the claims while you focus on healing.

If you were injured in a pedestrian accident after being struck by a car or truck, contact a local Justice Guardians pedestrian accident lawyer today.

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David Petrone
Date Published: March 15, 2022
David Petrone is a personal injury attorney at Justice Guardians.
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