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Injured on a crosswalk: Understanding pedestrian rights

On Behalf of | Apr 22, 2024 | Personal injury

Pedestrians are the most vulnerable on the road. They could suffer serious injuries when they get into accidents, especially if it involves a motor vehicle. While there are stringent measures to warrant pedestrians’ safety on the road, such as establishing designated crosswalks, accidents could still happen.

It is important for pedestrians involved in an accident in a crosswalk to understand their rights and possible course of action.

Pedestrian right of way

Drivers should yield to pedestrians on the roads to avoid accidents. They must also comply with speed limits in areas with heavy foot traffic, such as school zones and neighborhoods. Nonetheless, pedestrians must also follow traffic rules, including the use of designated crosswalks and obeying signals.

Determining Liability

In most cases, drivers are liable for the injuries sustained by the pedestrian. Injured pedestrians have the right to seek compensation for the following:

  • Medical expense: This includes hospitalization, surgeries, medication and rehabilitation bills.
  • Property damage: This involves damaged personal belongings, such as clothing and electronic devices.
  • Income loss: This is for lost wages or income when the injured pedestrian cannot work due to their injury.
  • Disability: This includes compensation for the long-term impact on the pedestrian’s quality of life when they incurred a permanent disability due to the accident.
  • Pain and suffering: This involves physical pain and emotional distress caused by the accident and its resulting injuries.

North Carolina requires vehicle owners to have an insurance policy, which could be helpful in such situations. However, they must shoulder costs beyond their insurance coverage. Additionally, the court could impose punitive damages on drivers if they have been negligent or reckless.

Pedestrians involved in crosswalk accidents could feel traumatized and devasted. Aside from the physical and emotional pain they experienced, seeking compensation could further add to their distress. An experienced personal injury lawyer could advocate for the victim’s rights in this situation.