In 2013, there were 2,735 pedestrians killed and an estimated 66,000 injured in traffic crashes. Over 4,600 traffic crashes each had one or more pedestrian fatalities. On average, a pedestrian was killed every two hours and injured every eight minutes. A majority of pedestrian accidents occur in urban areas. Pedestrian fatalities were highest in California with 701 fatalities.
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, drivers must follow the following guidelines in regards to pedestrians:
- Respect the right-of-way of pedestrians. Always stop for any pedestrian crossing at corners or other crosswalks, even if the crosswalk is in the middle of the block, at corners with or without traffic signal lights, whether or not the crosswalks are marked by painted lines.
- Do not pass a vehicle stopped at a crosswalk. A pedestrian who is not in plain sight may be crossing the street. Stop and proceed when all pedestrians have crossed the street.
- Do not drive on a sidewalk, except to cross it to enter or exit a driveway or alley. When crossing, yield to all pedestrians.
- Do not stop in a crosswalk. Stopping in a crosswalk places pedestrians in danger.
- Allow older pedestrians, disabled pedestrians, and pedestrians with young children sufficient time to cross the street.
- Obey signs pertaining to pedestrians.
The penalty for drivers who fail to yield the right of way to pedestrians is a minimum $220 if it results in a pedestrian injury. Damages awarded in pedestrian accidents can include past and future medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, mental anguish, pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and punitive damages.
If you or a loved one was a victim of a pedestrian accident, please fill out our free case review form.