West Palm Beach Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
Nationwide, pedestrian traffic fatalities are on the rise, according to the latest Governors Highway Safety Association report. With a seven percent increase from the previous year, pedestrian fatalities in the State of Florida rose even more than the national average of five percent. For residents of West Palm Beach, the news is equally alarming given that Palm Beach County ranks sixth in the State of Florida, for counties with a population of over 200,000, for traffic crashes resulting in serious and fatal injuries to pedestrians and bicyclists. If you were injured, or you lost a loved one, in a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident that was caused, in whole or in part, by another party, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries or loss.
When a pedestrian is involved in a traffic accident, the pedestrian often suffers serious physical injuries as well as lasting emotional trauma. The inability to work coupled with mounting medical bills may also result in financial hardship. If another party (or parties) caused or contributed to the accident, a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident lawyer at Demand the Limits can help ensure that they are held accountable and that you receive the maximum compensation for all your injuries or for the loss you suffered as a surviving family member in the case of a pedestrian fatality. Let us put our experience, resources, and commitment to work for you if you were injured or lost a loved one in a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident. Contact us today by calling (561) 600-3555 or contact us online to schedule your free case evaluation.
What Causes West Palm Beach Pedestrian Accidents?
The State of Florida consistently ranks at the top of the list of states with the highest number of pedestrian accident injuries and fatalities. Although West Palm Beach offers residents and visitors an enticing opportunity to walk year around, pedestrian traffic accidents are a very real concern. According to the West Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, pedestrians and bicyclists were involved in 1,357 collisions, resulting in 135 serious injury crashes, and 69 fatalities. Experts point to several common factors that frequently contribute to pedestrian accidents, including:
- Aggressive driving. Motorists weaving in an out of traffic, failing to yield, or otherwise driving aggressively pose a serious threat to pedestrians.
- Speed. Speeding is a factor in almost one in 10 pedestrian accident fatalities.
- Alcohol or drug use. When either (or both) a motorist or a pedestrian is under the influence of alcohol or drugs it dramatically increases the likelihood of a pedestrian accident.
- Distracted drivers. Distractions such as cell phones, passengers, and eating while driving can lead to a motorist failing to recognize pedestrians in the roadway.
- Lack of enforcement. Pedestrian traffic laws are often not enforced, causing motorists to ignore the laws which can contribute to an accident.
- Age demographics. Nationwide, the older population has reached historic proportions. Florida is a popular mecca for retirees who may suffer from slower response time, failing hearing/eyesight, or memory problems, making them more vulnerable while walking.
What Are Some Common Pedestrian Accident Injuries?
A pedestrian is at an undeniable disadvantage when involved in a collision with any type of motor vehicle. Consequently, pedestrian injuries in an accident can be serious, even life-threatening, and may include:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI).
- Spinal cord injury, including paralysis.
- Neck and back injury
- Soft tissue injury, including strains and sprains.
- Internal organ damage.
- “Road rash” and scarring.
- Broken and fractured bones
Florida Pedestrian Law
Sometimes, pedestrian accidents occur because motorists and/or pedestrians fail to understand the applicable rules of the road. In the State of Florida, Florida Statute 316.130 governs the rights and responsibilities of motorists and pedestrians when they share the roadway. Among the most important pedestrian laws in Florida are the following:
- Pedestrians are required to obey traffic control devices (including pedestrian walk signals) that apply to pedestrians unless otherwise directed by a police officer.
- Pedestrians are required to use crosswalks with traffic control signals if they are available.
- Pedestrians are required to use sidewalks if a sidewalk is provided and accessible.
- Drivers of motor vehicles are required to stop for pedestrians who are in a crosswalk with a traffic control signal or signage. If there are no traffic control signals or signs, a driver must yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk.
- Pedestrians are prohibited from stepping into the path of a vehicle if the driver does not have enough time to yield.
- A motorist cannot pass another vehicle that is stopped for pedestrians in a crosswalk.
- Pedestrians crossing a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection must yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway.
- Motorists are obligated to use due care to avoid colliding with pedestrians and give warnings and exercise proper precaution when there is a child or confused/incapacitated person present.
Who Is Responsible for Injuries in a West Palm Beach Pedestrian Accident?
When a pedestrian is injured or killed in a pedestrian accident, a motorist involved in the accident may be held legally liable if the motorist’s negligent or wrongful conduct was a contributing factor in the accident. For example, if a motorist was speeding, driving while distracted or under the influence, or otherwise violated a traffic or pedestrian law, the motorist may be held liable for injuries caused in a pedestrian accident. If a roadway or intersection was poorly designed for pedestrians, city, state, or federal agencies could also be held responsible for a pedestrian accident. Because every pedestrian accident involves distinctive circumstances, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced West Palm Beach pedestrian accident lawyer to discuss who might be responsible for the injuries or loss you sustained in a pedestrian accident.
What Compensation Might Be Available in a West Palm Beach Pedestrian Accident?
Both economic and non-economic damages could be available for the victim or surviving family members of a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident. Economic damages are intended to compensate an injured victim for the direct expenses related to the accident, such as medical bills, lost income, and specialized medical equipment needed because of injuries suffered in the accident. Non-economic damages cover the subjective injuries a victim suffers, such as mental anguish, disfigurement, physical pain, and suffering.
If you are a surviving family member of someone who was fatally injured in a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident you may also be entitled to compensation in a Florida wrongful death lawsuit for things such as lost future earnings, pain and suffering, and the loss of guidance and companionship.
Get Help from an Experienced West Palm Beach Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
When a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident results in injuries to a victim or causes the death of a victim, all parties whose negligence or wrongful conduct contributed to the accident should be held accountable. Furthermore, as an injured victim or surviving loved one, you should be fully and fairly compensated for your physical injuries, emotional trauma, or loss. An experienced West Palm Beach pedestrian accident lawyer at Demand the Limits will pursue all responsible parties to ensure that you receive the maximum possible compensation available. Having an experienced West Palm Beach pedestrian accident lawyer on your side is the key to:
- Making sure you receive the medical care you require.
- Proving negligence on the part of the at-fault party (or parties).
- Investigating the accident.
- Negotiating a favorable out-of-court settlement when possible.
- Advocating for you in court when litigation is required.
At Demand the Limits, our experienced West Palm Beach personal injury accident lawyers have extensive experience with pedestrian accident cases. We fight hard to defend the legal rights of all West Palm Beach injury victims. Call (561) 600-3555 or contact us online to schedule your free case evaluation. Don’t delay – the sooner you have an attorney fighting for you, the better protected your legal rights will be.