We live in an urban environment where people walking on sidewalks and across crosswalks is a way of life. Unfortunately, in a community known for its traffic, there are bound to be pedestrians hit by cars. When that happens, victims first need to seek emergency medical care and can then start working with a pedestrian accident lawyer in Gwinnett County at Brauns Law on getting compensation for all of their expenses, losses, and pain and suffering.
Hit by a Motor Vehicle
The most recent Georgia Department of Transportation pedestrian statistics from 2000 to 2006 reveal for following pedestrian accident rates for the major counties:
- Gwinnett: 811 crashes, or 1.7 pedestrians hit for every 10,000 people
- Fulton: 4,206 crashes, or 6.8 pedestrians hit for every 10,000 people
- DeKalb: 2,250 crashes, or 4.6 pedestrians hit for every 10,000 people
- Cobb: 1,052 crashes, or 2.3 pedestrians hit for every 10,000 people
- Clayton: 720 crashes, or 4.0 pedestrians hit for every 10,000 people
The Georgia DOT study further reports a total of 1,087 pedestrians in the state lost their lives in traffic accidents from 2000 to 2006. That is six percent of the pedestrians involved in traffic accidents over that time period, or about one in every 16.
Pedestrian accidents usually occur because car drivers are not mindful of pedestrians while driving. In other words, the car driver is negligent. One of the first things we do as your lawyer is investigate fault. The following scenarios usually make the driver the one at fault:
- Driver’s failure to obey traffic signs or signals
- Driving while distracted, like talking on a cell phone or turned around talking to a passenger
- Driving while intoxicated
- Driver’s failure to use a turn signal
- Driver’s failure to yield or stop at a crosswalk
However, there are also times a jury will blame the pedestrian for the accident even though Georgia pedestrian law may still hold the driver responsible. Usually, a jury begins to place blame on the pedestrian when:
- Pedestrians are hard to see, like at night and wearing dark clothes
- Pedestrians are crossing the street or walking down the street in unexpected locations, like not in crosswalks.
Make sure you are prepared to address these issues with a solid case built on a thorough investigation and relevant evidence.
Pedestrian Injured on a Sidewalk/Road
Many pedestrian accidents are actually the result of poor sidewalk or road maintenance. In such cases, the local government entity responsible for the upkeep of roads or sidewalks could be liable.
However, government immunity may protect these entities from liability in some cases, making such cases much more complicated. Work with David Brauns to address any barriers to getting compensation related to government immunity. Georgia law waives this sovereign immunity, but the details can vary depending on the level of government (state, county, city, etc.).
Pedestrian Struck by a Falling Object
Meanwhile, shop owners, construction companies and contractors, and others may be liable if an object falls and strikes a pedestrian. For example, if a pedestrian is walking past a new construction project, and an item falls – no matter how small – and strikes the pedestrian, it can cause significant injury. The general contractor or another party may be liable in this case.
Another example might be a sign or other object that falls from a shop owner’s storefront. The shop owner may be liable if he did not exercise due care in securing it to the front of the building, or if he knew or should have known that it was improperly secured.
Why You Need a Gwinnett County Pedestrian Accident Attorney
There are at least three reasons you need an attorney from Brauns Law helping you with your injury claim after you have been hit by a car.
1. Fighting the argument you were partially at fault. Many insurance companies will tell you that you are partially to blame for your accident even if Georgia law is on your side. It takes an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer to lay out the law and evidence to the insurance company so that you can collect the injury settlement you are entitled to under Georgia law. Without a lawyer, the insurance company may either deny your claim or substantially reduce its settlement offer to account for your supposed portion of fault.
So in a lot of pedestrian injury claims, it is not enough to prove the driver was at fault, you must also prove that you were not at fault. This is where having a pedestrian accident attorney who understands Georgia pedestrian law on your side will help.
2. Getting medical treatment for serious injuries. Another reason to have a lawyer help you with your injury claim is because the injuries in pedestrian accidents are usually severe. When a car hits a person walking, it is never a good outcome for the person. We can help you get the medical care you need with or without you having health insurance. When you have a lawyer, it lets you concentrate on getting better. You will not have to worry about dealing with insurance adjusters or finding access to medical care.
3. Securing critical evidence. You should already be thinking there is a risk your pedestrian injury claim could come down to a “he said, she said” argument. It may be your word against that of the driver about what happened. David Brauns knows how to get the evidence to make sure you do not get caught in this trap. The evidence we look for includes:
- Camera footage, either traffic cameras or nearby security footage from ATMs, parking lots, or retail stores
- Eyewitness statements
- Police reports, where the officer’s investigation can help support that the driver is at fault
Contact Brauns Law Today
Call us 404-418-8244 or submit your information online for a FREE evaluation of your claim.