Car accidents involving pedestrians often entail catastrophic or fatal injuries. It’s crucial for every Texas driver to know how to avoid these accidents and what to do if one occurs. An injured pedestrian can file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation for their medical expenses and other damages following a pedestrian accident. If a pedestrian accident results in a death, the victim’s surviving family can file a wrongful death claim in some cases.
Proving Fault in Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrians have a duty of care while traveling in public to follow posted traffic signals and only walk on acceptable paths, such as sidewalks or road shoulders, where allowed. Pedestrians can prevent serious injuries by staying as far from traffic as possible while walking, wearing reflective clothing at night, and looking carefully before crossing any streets or intersections. Drivers must also stay vigilant when pedestrians are nearby, especially in residential areas where children may be at play. Drivers are much more dangerous than pedestrians on the road, and therefore have a higher duty of care.
Damages and Compensation for Pedestrian Accidents
Like any personal injury lawsuit, a plaintiff can only succeed with a pedestrian accident lawsuit if he or she can prove the defendant was negligent, and his or her negligence directly resulted in the incident in question and the plaintiff’s damages. The plaintiff’s attorney helps accomplish this by interviewing the people involved in the case, gathering evidence, and proving the elements of the defendant’s negligence in court.
First, the plaintiff’s attorney must prove that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff at the time in question and then show how he or she breached or failed to meet that duty. Next, the plaintiff’s attorney must prove the plaintiff’s damages were the result of the defendant’s negligence and not some other cause. The plaintiff will also need to provide evidence of the extent of his or her damages resulting from the incident in question.
Plaintiffs in pedestrian accident lawsuits can recover several types of damages, including:
- Medical expenses. Pedestrians have very little protection from the force of an oncoming vehicle. Pedestrian accidents at even moderate speeds can result in broken bones, spinal cord injuries, severe lacerations, organ damage, traumatic brain injuries, and crushing injuries. The injured party can sue for all expenses related to treating such injuries, but the plaintiff must be able to prove the injuries occurred from the incident in question and not some other cause.
- Lost income. When an accident forces the victim to miss work, he or she can claim compensation for the wages he or she would have expected to earn during that time. If a pedestrian accident causes an injury resulting in a permanent disability that prevents the victim from working, the victim can sue for the wages he or she could have reasonably expected to earn in the future.
- Property damage. The victim can sue for the cost of repairing or replacing personal property damaged or destroyed by the defendant’s negligent behavior.
- Pain and suffering. Texas law acknowledges that the experience of a personal injury is worse for victims than the economic fallout. Medical expert witnesses will testify to the plaintiff’s level of physical pain, emotional distress, and mental suffering sustained due to the defendant’s negligence. The jury then awards an appropriate amount, typically several times more than the plaintiff’s medical expense compensation amount.
Call Aaron A. Herbert, P.C. For Assistance with Your Texas Pedestrian Accident Case Today!
It’s essential for anyone who has suffered injuries and other damages from a pedestrian accident to seek legal representation as soon as possible. Texas places a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims, so it’s vital to act quickly. The Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C. can help. We’ve helped thousands across Texas in a variety of personal injury lawsuits and other civil claims. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team. We can review the details of your pedestrian accident and let you know what to expect from a lawsuit.