Driving a car is easier to learn, but to be a good driver it takes a lot of safety measures. You not only have to look out for other vehicles or motorbikes, but also the pedestrians walking on the road or crossing it.
At the crossings, never speed to overtake a car that has slowed down or stopped to allow pedestrians to cross. Unfortunately, as per the NHTSA, fatal pedestrian accidents are increasing as the years pass.
When you hit someone with your vehicle, it is crucial to be aware of what needs to be done ASAP. Basic traffic rules define how to compensate for the damages and injuries, but it is crucial to keep in mind how to drive safely and defensively.
What steps to take instantly after a mishap with a pedestrian?
Naturally, this situation is quite stressful and painful for the involved parties, the driver and the pedestrian. However, you need to be calm and take the following necessary steps:
- Safety first – Get the injured pedestrian to a safe place. Never administer medical treatment other than what is needed in an emergency like CPR.
- Call an ambulance – Call for medical and legal [police & insurance provider] help. When the police arrive, you give factual statements about the occurrence of an accident.
- Exchange contact details only – With everyone involved exchange only the contact details. If the involved pedestrian is not injured exchange insurance info, email address, and other contact details.
Never talk extensively with anyone around or even the pedestrian. Avoid statements that seem like the feeling of guilt can expose you to a lawsuit. Therefore, say everything needed with caution. Avoid saying, ‘I feel guilty’ and never communicate with the pedestrian’s lawyer or insurance provider.
Who is at fault?
This is the huge question, ‘Who was at-fault?’ In general, fault gets defined by negligence law. In simple terms, the person who was unable to act carefully under the situation can be regarded as ‘negligent’.
Sometimes, both the pedestrian and driver can be regarded as negligent. For example, the former is crossing the road wrongfully, while the driver drives faster than the posted speed limit. The judgment differs in each state. In some, a contributory negligence rule means the pedestrian cannot recover any damage claim from the involved driver or his/her insurance provider. In other states, a comparative negligence law is applied, which means pedestrians can get some money against a damage claim.
The preliminary findings include on-spot statements from the pedestrian, driver, and witnesses along with detailed investigation. Accident police report defines which party is at fault as per the law enforcement.
Insurance provider’s findings
Police findings can get disputed by the insurance firm. They send an adjuster on the accident site to recreate the scene and understand the pedestrian’s injuries. If the pedestrian feels that the insurance provider will approve an unfair fault percentage, then they must hire an accident attorney.
What is pedestrian accident coverage?
Injured pedestrians get covered under workers’ compensation or health & disability insurance policy, if an accident happens when on the job. Moreover, they may even get coverage under an auto insurance liability policy. Payment will depend on whose negligence caused the accident.
To conclude, state laws differ, and thus it is better to lawyer up, especially if you were behind the wheel and hit the pedestrian.