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Pedestiran Accident Archives - Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law

What to Do If You Lose a Loved One to A Fatal Bicycle Accident

What to Do If You Lose a Loved One to A Fatal Bicycle Accident

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Riding a bike is an environmentally friendly mode of transportation that can also help you to relax and decrease overall stress levels. Most modern cities are bicycle-friendly with special lanes for cycling to motivate residents to adopt an active lifestyle. The activity is widely popular, and many people cycle not only for recreation but also to go to work or run errands. However, cycling isn’t free of its drawbacks and bicycle accidents are fairly common and often result in fatal injuries. If you’ve lost a loved one to a fatal bicycle accident, you might have a right to pursue compensation. A competent Austin personal injury attorney can advocate on your behalf.   

Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents

In spite of taking measures to incorporate bicycle-friendly lanes, cyclists frequently find themselves sharing roads with automobiles and motorcycles. Even if you’re a skilled bicyclist with expert knowledge on traffic rules, you’ll only be safe if other road users follow the rules too.

Here are the most common causes of bicycle accidents:

  • An automobile turning into a cyclist’s path
  • Car drivers not seeing cyclists when making lane changes or turns
  • A vehicle pulling out of a junction
  • Doors of vehicles opening ahead of an oncoming bicycle rider
  • Bad roads with potholes, water puddles or oil slicks may cause a bicyclist to lose balance or skid
  • Reckless driving or riding
  • Lack of road awareness
  • A driver’s inability to judge a cyclists’ speed or distance

What to Do If You Lose a Loved One Because Of a Fatal Bicycle Accident

If a close relative has lost their life to a bicycle accident, knowing what to do next may be hard. That’s why it is advisable to get in touch with an Austin personal injury attorney, who can help to ease the burden. You should also consider the steps below:

  • Report the bicycle accident to the relevant authorities and acquire a police report
  • If another vehicle was involved in the bicycle accident, try to get the vehicle’s license number. You should also collect information from possible witnesses, and any other evidence you consider useful
  • Acquire a medical report, so that you can initiate the claims process
  • Keep all the records, including medical expenses, burial costs, and other expenditure receipts intact

Filing a compensation claim for a fatal bicycle accident can be a tough undertaking. If you want to increase your winning chances, follow the steps listed above, and then contact a reputable law firm.

Seek the Help of an Austin Personal Injury Attorney

At Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law, our personal injury attorneys are committed to helping our clients acquire the best settlement. After losing a loved one to a fatal bicycle accident caused by negligence, you might not know what to do next. However, a competent Austin personal injury can guide you on the proper steps to take in your pursuit of justice. Losing a loved one can lead to severe emotional suffering, hefty medical bills, lost income and more.

With the help of a competent attorney, you may be able to pursue compensation for all your losses from the liable party. While money cannot bring back a loved one, it can help to reduce some of your financial burden. Call our law firm today to book a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer.  

 

What Should I Know About Hit and Run Pedestrian Accidents

What Should I Know About Hit and Run Pedestrian Accidents

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A hit and run pedestrian accident is where a car hits a person on foot and leaves the collision scene straight away. Even if a driver isn’t at fault, the act of running away from the scene of the accident makes the incident a hit and run.

If you or someone close is a victim of a hit and run pedestrian accident, consider getting an Austin personal injury attorney on your side. Such a case can be complex, so it’s best to seek help from legal professionals. Contact Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law at (512) 476-4444 for a free and detailed consultation.

What Are the Consequences of a Hit and Run Pedestrian Accident?

A hit and run is a serious criminal charge in Texas State. If a driver hits a pedestrian by accident, but chooses to flee without administering help, they might face a 3rd degree felony conviction. The felony carries two to ten years of imprisonment. If the victim didn’t suffer severe injuries, the consequence could be up to twelve months in county jail or five years at a state prison.

Issues with Liability

Most times, pedestrians have the right of way, so they are not usually responsible in hit and run pedestrian accidents. Automobile drivers are required to pay attention to traffic signs and keep an eye out for pedestrians always, even in places without crosswalks.

However, sometimes, both parties may be liable for the accident if they were both negligent. Texas uses a modified comparative negligence law, meaning victims can’t make damage claims if they are over 50% at-fault for their injuries.

It’s worth noting that enforcing one’s rights is very different in a hit and run pedestrian accident. The first priority of a victim should be to find the driver who hit them, so they can file a claim with their insurer. That’s because they might not get compensation till the motorist is identified. As a result, the person will have to utilize their healthcare insurance and make a claim with their insurer. However, chances of identifying the hit-and-driver can be increased by:

  • Calling 911 straight away
  • Noting the physical description of the car and motorist
  • Tracking down any witness who might have seen the accident
  • Approaching business in the nearby area to see if they have set up security cameras.

Some of the above tasks might be hard or not possible depending on the extent of the victim’s injuries.  

Get Legal Assistance from an Austin Personal Injury Attorney

A hit and run pedestrian can have a substantial impact in the life of the victim and their family. Without knowing the identity of the liable driver, recovering compensation may be challenging. Additionally, without witnesses to give an account of the incident, it’s likely that the victim may be considered liable. That implies they may not get anything for the pain and suffering they are facing.

Fortunately, the Austin personal injury attorneys at Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law, can help. We are knowledgeable and experienced in hit and run pedestrian accidents. In addition, we can assist you with police reports and talk with your insurance provider to help you get some reimbursement for your agony. The compensation can go into paying for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other potential losses. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us as soon as possible. 

 

Charges for Hitting a Pedestrian

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Hitting a pedestrian is the last thing on your mind, as a motorist. You cannot begin to imagine the dire consequences that await you regardless of your driving skills on the road. When this happens, there are essential things you need to consider to avoid worsening the situation. What are the charges for hitting a pedestrian? How will your case be determined? This article will provide an insight into everything you need to know about motorist-pedestrian cases.

Civil Liability

The pedestrian presses charges against you to get compensation for medical expenses, pain, and suffering. Alternatively, they may file a third-party car claim through the driver’s insurance company. This can only be done when the driver is at fault, and not for jaywalkers.

When pursuing an insurance claim, an attorney will try to prove that the driver was careless enough to hit a pedestrian. Witnesses and third parties can issue their statements on the same. The police officer in charge of the accident must present their report based on their findings. In the report, they must indicate whether the driver violated the road traffic rules.

A police report carries a lot of weight, whereas pursuing compensation for the damages and injuries from the negligent driver is concerned. Most of these negotiations are normally done out-of-court with insurance providers. Still, the driver’s insurer may offer a lower amount to avoid incurring losses. When you have a qualified personal injury lawyer by your side, your chances of getting a considerable amount is high.

In some cases, a motorist may hit pedestrians, resulting in wrongful death. The pedestrian’s loved ones can sue the driver on behalf of the deceased. An attorney will help prove if the driver was negligent so that they can pay for it.

Criminal Liability

Here, the driver accidentally hits a pedestrian and stops to bear the consequences of their actions. The pedestrian may press charges through a personal injury lawyer, and a higher car insurance premium. But when they flee the scene, they will be prosecuted on the grounds of hit and run.

A driver who is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is at a higher risk of hitting a pedestrian. When this happens, it is assumed as an “aggravating circumstance.” When prosecuted, the driver is likely to do time in prison or pay hefty fines.

In a case where you hit a pedestrian and they die, you may face criminal charges for vehicular manslaughter. You can either be charged with wrongful death if the court proves you were negligent.

An Austin Personal Injury Lawyer can Help

Have you been involved in a car-pedestrian accident and are looking for an experienced Austin Personal Injury Attorney? Go no further than Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law. Our team of knowledgeable and licensed attorneys is passionate about helping Austin residents get justice. From civil to criminal liabilities, we will personalize our services to meet your needs. Even if you doubt that you are about to lose a case, we will restore hope to you. Contact us today for a consultation or to get a legal representative for your case.

Pedestrian Accident Statistics

Pedestrian Accident Statistics

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2016 report, at least 5,987 pedestrians were killed in the US. This means that one person can have a crash-related accident every 1.5 hours. Also, at least 129,000 pedestrians sustained personal injuries in 2015. That person behind the wheel who causes the accident or gets hit by a car could be anyone. It is essential to learn about pedestrian accident statistics in creating awareness to help reduce road carnage.

Number of Vehicles Involved Vs. Severity of Injuries

The type of vehicle involved in a pedestrian accident greatly determines the impact of injuries. It gets worse when more than one vehicle is involved. In 2013, 92% of pedestrians who died from car crashes involved a single vehicle, while the rest of the 8% came as a result of multi-vehicle collisions. Passenger vehicles such as SUVs, pickup trucks and vans accounted for the majority of front impact collisions resulting in pedestrian(s) death.

Driving Under the Influence

Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol plays a significant role in pedestrian accidents. About 49% of the fatal accidents were as a result of alcohol use, either by the driver or pedestrian.

Urban Vs. Rural areas

Urban areas account for 73% of pedestrian accidents, while 27% occur in rural areas. It could be because more vehicles and pedestrians are using the road in urban areas.

Time When the Accidents Take Place

Most accidents where pedestrian fatalities are reported to happen during the night hours. Pedestrian accidents also differ with the time of the year. It explains why more people are likely to be killed during the summer holidays as compared to during the winter.

What can You do to Increase Pedestrian Safety?

It is common to see or hear about accidents involving jaywalkers. To prevent this from happening, engineering measures that separate vehicles from pedestrians should be considered. It would be absurd for a pedestrian to cross a highway through an intersection while ignoring the sidewalks, refuge islands, and footbridges.

Motorists, on the other hand, should drive with caution even when they are in compromised situations. Observing the recommended traffic speed can also help reduce the number and severity of accidents on the road. For instance, if you were driving at high speed then hit a pedestrian, there is a high chance of them dying on the spot.

Discover the Statistics Through Our Lawyer

Road users need to learn more about pedestrian accident statistics to help create a multifaceted approach in curbing road deaths and injuries. Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law, is a team of accident and personal injury lawyers who assist people involved in accidents in Austin, TX. We only charge legal fees once your case has been concluded. Whether the accident was your fault or another person’s, our experienced lawyers are ready to help you in the corridors of justice. Contact us today for a free no-obligation consultation.

Getting a Ticket after a Pedestrian Accident

Getting a Ticket after a Pedestrian Accident

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Hitting a pedestrian is the last thing in the mind of every motorist. The aftermath can be traumatizing to both the victim and the driver. If you hit a pedestrian, you risk facing motor vehicle tribunal fines, criminal, civil charges or loss of license. It will help you to know how getting a ticket after a pedestrian accident works. An Austin personal injury lawyer has the legal expertise to advise you on how to go about this.

The Potential Liabilities for Hitting a Pedestrian

In Austin, a pedestrian has the right to sue the driver who has hit them. You may get a ticket for hitting a pedestrian after it has been established that you were at fault. The award for this type of accident may vary depending on the likelihood of a severe injury and other losses. The driver’s insurer may be compelled to pay for the resulting damages in a civil lawsuit:

  1. Pain and suffering
  2. Medical expenses for a personal injury
  3. Lost wages
  4. Emotional trauma

In a case where the driver violated traffic laws, the driver may be sued for the damages in a criminal lawsuit. This includes driving under the influence, ignoring the traffic lights, hit and run or reckless driving. The at-fault driver risks getting fines, losing their license or getting incarcerated.

What Happens When You Hit A Jaywalker?

If you were driving on the highway and then a pedestrian suddenly appears, there is a high chance of hitting them. Crossing highways through an intersection makes pedestrians vulnerable to car crashes. In case you were not driving recklessly and happen to hit a jaywalker, you may be excused from getting a ticket for hitting a pedestrian. However, you will still be compelled to pay for the damages.

In a motor accident claim tribunal, a separate application will be processed. Here, the court will examine if there was contributory negligence on the part of both parties. The driver’s insurer will be ordered to pay for personal injury and other damages. This can be done out-of-court or away from a criminal trial.

Why is it Important to Hire a Motor Accident Attorney?

If you have received a ticket for hitting a pedestrian, whether you are at fault or not, you should contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. An experienced attorney will inform you of the nature of your case, advise you on the measures you need to take to avoid hefty fines.

Hire an Austin Personal Injury Lawyer

Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law, is a legal firm that handles pedestrian-accident cases in Austin and its surroundings. Our dedicated team of legal experts understands the rules of traffic and the consequences that come with violations. Whether you hit a pedestrian out of negligence or due to unclear circumstances, we will be there to guide you when being issued with a ticket. Contact us today if you have any questions about getting tickets for hitting a pedestrian or need a personal injury to represent you.

What to Do In Case of Pedestrian Car Accident Injuries

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that there were 6,283 pedestrian accident deaths in 2018. With the CDC (Center for Disease Control) stating that a pedestrian is killed in an accident every two hours, it is vividly apparent how devastating pedestrian car accident injuries are.

A car does not have to be speeding to cause serious injuries if it hits a pedestrian. 10 miles an hour is enough to cause an injury.

If you are a pedestrian involved in a car accident, Austin Personal Injury Attorney will be of significant assistance. Receiving an appropriate settlement due to your injuries may be the most vital element of your recovery process.

What to Do Immediately After the Accident

It is crucial to remain calm if you are the pedestrian or the driver in a pedestrian car accident. You should ensure you do the following immediately after the accident:

“Safety First!” is a timeless saying and it applies in pedestrian car accidents. Get any injured person to safety and administer first aid if necessary.

The next step should be to contact emergency responders. Ensure to be truthful and detailed about what happened when they get to the scene of the accident even if you are at fault.

If possible, exchange contact information with those not incapacitated in the crash. It will be easier to receive compensation if they have insurance in this regard.

Common Injuries in Pedestrian Car Accidents

When a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle, their can injuries can be very extensive. Any part of the body is at risk of injury in such a collision.

Many factors will determine the extent of the pedestrian’s injuries such as the make of the vehicle, the speed at which it was moving and the pedestrian’s health. Common injuries in pedestrian car accidents include:

Head injuries: Whenever the head is hit with significant force in a collision, it is a very solemn matter. Head trauma injuries must be treated with substantial care no matter how minute.

Internal injuries are also prevalent in pedestrian car accidents. Such injuries can include internal bleeding as a result of perforation of blood vessels, fractured bones and ruptured organs. Broken bones are also very common in pedestrian car accidents as they bear the majority of the forceful trauma. 

Pelvic Injuries: The design of most cars make pelvic injuries very common as that is the most common point of collision in pedestrian car accident injuries. There are several types of pelvic injuries all of which have significant repercussions.

Spinal Cord Damage: A spinal cord injury is often life-threatening or life-altering at the very least. The most important connection between your brain and your body cannot afford even the slightest of damage.

Lacerations: A dep cut or tear in your skin is common during pedestrian car accidents especially due to broken glass. The extent and location of a laceration will determine what type it is.

Pedestrian car accidents are particularly dangerous because when a pedestrian is hit, they can hit the ground, a stationary object or another oncoming vehicle. The severity of pedestrian car accident injuries increases with the force of the collision.

If you are involved in a pedestrian car accident in Austin, call Robert Buford, the best personal injury attorney in the state, as soon as possible. He has tremendous experience dealing with personal injury cases and will help you receive the compensation you deserve.

Pedestrian Accident Attorney in Austin

Can You Get in Trouble for Almost Hitting a Pedestrian?

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If you hit a pedestrian, you may face consequences such as criminal charges, losing your license, fines, or jail term. The confusing question is ‘can you get in trouble for almost hitting a pedestrian?’ the answer is no. Almost hitting someone is not an offense. They cannot sue you. If you are unsure of what to do, seek the help of your Austin personal injury attorney

Lawsuits are about seeking compensation for damages that result from negligence. If there are no damages, there are no grounds for a suit. If, however, you were violating traffic laws, you can get in trouble for them. You are unlikely to almost hit a pedestrian without violating the available regulations. 

What Type of Trouble Can You Get In?

DUI/DWI

Driving intoxicated is a criminal offense. You can get into trouble for it even if you didn’t hurt anyone. If you are arrested and convicted for DUI/DWI, you may face jail time or a fine. In such cases, hitting a pedestrian would be considered an ‘aggravating circumstance.’ 

Over speeding

Over speeding is a common cause of accidents. If you were caught over speeding, you will be given a ticket. It does not matter whether you hit a pedestrian. There are speed limits anywhere. Going faster than you should might cause fatal accidents. If you hit a pedestrian while driving at high speed, their chances of survival are reduced. 

Reckless or Aggressive Driving

Driving recklessly endangers your life as well as other road users. Some reckless habits include; texting while driving, failure to use turn signals, and doing any other activities that take your attention away from the road. You can get in trouble for reckless or aggressive driving even if no one really gets hurt. 

Running Red Lights or Stop Signs 

Red lights may be annoying but they are there for a reason. Running stop signs and red lights endangers other people. You may be risking other people’s lives just to save a few minutes. It is a traffic violation even when you don’t actually hurt anyone. 

Unsafe Lane Changes

You must always alert other drivers when you are about to make a move that affects them. When you want to change lanes, use your signal. Changing your lanes without paying thought to it may make you pay a huge fine. 

Can you get in trouble for almost hitting a pedestrian? Even though the answer is no, you can still get in trouble for violating traffic regulations. 

Are you looking for an Austin personal injury attorney? Consider working with Robert Littlefield Buford III, Attorney at Law. We are a specialized practice that can take care of all your personal injury and criminal defense cases. We deliver effective trial representation in Austin. If you or a loved one have been arrested for suspicion of violating traffic regulations, our attorneys are always willing to help. We have handled plenty of traffic violation cases over the years. Call or contact our office today and request a free and confidential consultation.

When a Pedestrian Is at Fault for a Car Accident

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When an accident involving a pedestrian and a motor vehicle occurs, many people assume that the driver of the motor vehicle will be found at fault for the crash, supposing that a pedestrian always has the right of way. However, this isn’t true; while motor vehicle drivers are certainly expected to yield to pedestrians in many cases, pedestrians too are bound to requirements and can be found at fault for a crash. If you have been in an accident, our Austin pedestrian accident attorney can offer representation and assist you in understanding your rights and the law. For now, here’s a look into situations in which a pedestrian may be found at fault for a car accident–

Pedestrian Crosses on a “Don’t Walk” Signal

When a crosswalk in Austin is marked and is controlled by a traffic control device, a pedestrian has an obligation to comply with the device’s instructions. As such, if a pedestrian enters a roadway, even if they are within a crosswalk when a traffic control device reads, “Don’t Walk” or “Wait” and an accident occurs, the pedestrian may be found liable for damages.

Pedestrian Suddenly Leaves a Curb or Other Place of Safety

As found in Texas Transportation Code Section 552.003 (b), a pedestrian is prohibited from suddenly leaving “a curb or other place of safety” and proceeding into the path of a vehicle when the vehicle is close enough that it is impossible for the driver to yield to the pedestrian. If a pedestrian does suddenly enter the roadway and puts themselves in the path of a driver and an accident occurs, the driver will likely not be held liable for damages that result.

Pedestrian Crosses at a Place Other than a Crosswalk

While a pedestrian does have the right-of-way in a crosswalk (assuming the traffic control device does not indicate that the pedestrian should not proceed), if a pedestrian is crossing at a place other than a marked or unmarked crosswalk, the pedestrian is required to yield the right-of-way to any oncoming vehicles.

Pedestrian Demonstrated Negligence

The above examples are specific instances of when a driver likely won’t be found at fault for a pedestrian crash, based on statutes found in Texas’ traffic code. However, the fault of a driver may also be reduced if evidence is produced that shows that a pedestrian’s own negligence contributed to the crash. For example, even if the pedestrian was crossing in a marked crosswalk when they had the right-of-way, evidence of intoxication or distraction (i.e. texting while walking) may be suggestive of the claim that the pedestrian contributed to their own harm by failing to exercise the proper degree of care to prevent an accident. As such, the pedestrian’s recoverable damages amount may be reduced in proportion to their degree of fault.

Call Our Austin Pedestrian Accident Attorney Today

If you have been involved in an accident as a pedestrian, you have likely incurred numerous forms of damages, ranging from medical expenses to disability and more. In order to preserve your right to compensation, it’s important that you understand how to prove fault in a pedestrian accident claim. Please reach out to our Austin pedestrian accident attorneys today for a free consultation and information about your options.

How to Avoid Fatal Pedestrian Accidents

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Each year, the city of Austin sees around 15,000 automobile crashes, resulting in thousands of injuries and dozens of fatalities. But no one is more vulnerable in a car accident than pedestrians. Unlike other motorists, a pedestrian lacks any protective barrier between them and a negligent driver, so they end up suffering the brunt of any collision.

As an experienced Austin pedestrian accident attorney, I have met with clients who have suffered horrific injuries—concussions, amputations, paralysis, and spinal cord damage. Their lives have been forever changed because of the actions of a careless or reckless driver.

We have also met with too many grieving family members who lost a loved one in a crash. Please follow the tips below for more information about how to avoid a fatal accident.

Always Use Crosswalks & Sidewalks

You should never jaywalk, which dramatically increases the chances of an accident. Motorists are not expecting a person to shoot out into the middle of the road, so always walk to the nearest crosswalk when you want to cross. Remember to wait until the light tells you it is okay to go. Also, remember to use the sidewalk whenever one is available. If there is no sidewalk, stay as close to the shoulder as possible to reduce your chances of getting hit.

Yield the Right of Way, if Necessary

A pedestrian in a crosswalk has the right of way, but don’t expect motorists to respect that. Too many motorists think that pedestrians should yield to them. Out of an abundance of caution, always yield to a vehicle that is racing through the crosswalk.

Make Yourself Visible at Night

A motorist who can’t see you is much more likely to crash into you, so increase your visibility accordingly. Some measures people take include:

  • Walking with a flashlight
  • Putting reflective tape on your jacket, book bag, or hat
  • Avoiding wearing dark clothing, which will cause you to blend in with the night

Watch Out for Bicycles, Too

Trucks and cars are not the only dangers a pedestrian must watch out for. People on a fast-moving bicycle can also slam into pedestrians and cause life-threatening injuries. Unfortunately, many cyclists are even less observant of the rules of the road than drivers of passenger sedans, so keep your eyes peeled for any approaching bikes.

Avoid Distracted Walking

If you’re looking at your cell phone, you’ll never see a vehicle racing toward the intersection. Wearing headphones can also limit your ability to hear a vehicle, making you even more vulnerable. Always reduce distractions and remain alert to your surroundings. Walk on the side of the road facing traffic so you can see the vehicles as they approach.

Go Immediately to the Doctor if You are Struck

Some people actually feel fine after being hit, only to finally succumb to problems a day or two later. You might not immediately know whether or not you have suffered a serious injury, so go to the doctor or hospital to be checked out. Some brain injuries, for example, don’t manifest for a day or two.

Meet with a Pedestrian Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one was struck by a car or bicycle, you must move quickly to preserve your right to legal compensation. Talk with an  Austin Pedestrian Accident Attorney today. Robert Littlefield Buford III has helped countless pedestrians after a serious injury, and he is available to discuss your legal options as well.

To schedule a free consultation, please call us today at 512-456-9126.

Is a Pedestrian Ever At-Fault in an Accident?

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Pedestrians can suffer serious and fatal injuries in collisions with motor vehicles, and sometimes those crashes involve negligent pedestrians. Motorists in Texas are familiar with the idea that pedestrians always have the right-of-way. While this is true in many scenarios, a pedestrian can behave in a careless or reckless manner, and that behavior can result in a collision. In such situations you might be asking yourself: is a pedestrian ever at-fault in an accident?

An Austin pedestrian accident attorney can say more, but generally speaking, in situations where a pedestrian was distracted or violated traffic laws, that pedestrian may be at fault for his or her injuries.

Scenarios in Which a Pedestrian Might Be Liable for an Accident

How can a pedestrian be responsible for an auto accident? There are numerous situations in which a pedestrian may have at least some liability—or at least be partially to blame—for a motor vehicle collision. The following are examples of scenarios in which a pedestrian could be found at fault for a crash:

  • Distracted walking while listening to music or texting on a smartphone;
  • Jaywalking, or crossing outside of a designated crossing area;
  • Crossing in a crosswalk when the traffic signal indicates not to cross (such as when a pedestrian has a “Do Not Walk” signal);
  • Intoxicated walking;
  • Walking in areas where pedestrians are prohibited, such as on highways; and
  • Trespassing, such as on train tracks or on private property.

To be clear, most pedestrian accidents do result from a motorist’s negligence. For instance, pedestrians routinely suffer debilitating injuries because an automobile driver was talking or texting while driving, or because a motorist was driving aggressively and failed to stop at a crosswalk. Yet pedestrians can be wholly or partially to blame when a collision occurs. At the same time, even when a pedestrian is at fault to a degree, that pedestrian still may be eligible to seek financial compensation from the motorist involved in the crash.

Proportionate Responsibility in Austin Pedestrian Collisions

When a pedestrian is partly to blame for an accident but not wholly to blame, Texas law on proportionate responsibility (Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Ann. §§ 33.001-33.017) says that the pedestrian may remain eligible for compensation.

As long as a pedestrian is not more responsible (or more at fault) than the other parties involved in the crash, the pedestrian still can recover damages. To put that another way, if a pedestrian is 50 percent or less at fault, she can still obtain damages from the other at fault party. In such a scenario, the pedestrian’s damages award will be reduced by her percentage of fault. For example, if a plaintiff is determined to be 20 percent at fault, a damages award of $50,000 would be reduced by 20 percent, or $10,000, and she would receive $40,000 total. Once a plaintiff is 51 percent or more at fault, however, the law bars her from recovering anything.

Seek Advice from an Austin Pedestrian Accident Lawyer

While pedestrians do have the right-of-way in most places in Austin, and motorists do owe a duty of care to pedestrians, bicyclists, and other motorists on the road, sometimes pedestrians can be at fault in an accident. However, just because a pedestrian was partially to blame does not mean that the pedestrian is ineligible for compensation. If you were injured in a collision, you should speak with an Austin pedestrian accident attorney about filing a claim for compensation. Contact Robert Littleford Buford III, Attorney at Law, at 512-710-1057.