Boca Raton is a beautiful city to visit and call home. Unfortunately, pedestrians enjoying what the area has to offer are sometimes in serious accidents. You may benefit from calling a pedestrian accident lawyer in Boca Raton at Eltringham Law Group if you or a loved one sustained injuries while walking on-foot.
Why Pedestrian Accidents in Boca Raton Happen
Data from the Governors Highway Safety Administration shows Florida ranks third in pedestrian deaths behind New Mexico and Arizona. Unfortunately, the Boca Raton area also has its share. In 2022, Palm Beach County had 644 pedestrian crashes, resulting in 528 injuries and 55 deaths.
Many factors contribute to pedestrian accidents. A personal injury lawyer from our firm can evaluate your case and help you determine what caused the accident.
High speeds affect a driver’s ability to stop in time for someone walking. They also increase the likelihood that a pedestrian will sustain severe injuries.
A driver turning right at an intersection may fail to yield to pedestrians with the right-of-way. Drivers turning left might not stop for people crossing at a walk light. A pedestrian accident attorney can advise you on your next steps if a driver hits you in an intersection.
Distracted drivers and pedestrians
Drivers may be adjusting their sound systems, looking at a phone, talking to passengers, or doing other things that distract their attention from the road. Pedestrians may be looking around, texting, or talking to others.
Roadway or sidewalk hazards
Pedestrians may trip or fall on raised sidewalks, steep curbs or potholes. Malfunctioning traffic signals, lack of signage, and unmarked crosswalks can also present hazards to people walking near roadways. A Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer can help you determine who is liable if a roadway and sidewalk hazard led to your accident.
Nighttime is generally more hazardous for pedestrians, especially in places away from crosswalks where cars drive faster. Heavy rain, fog and poorly lit streets can cause low visibility for drivers and pedestrians.
The CDC reports that alcohol impairment factored into almost half of the crashes that resulted in a pedestrian fatality in 2019. Some accidents resulted from a driver under the influence, while others happened due to an impaired pedestrian.
Drivers backing up
Drivers backing out of driveways or parking spaces can fail to look for pedestrians first. Likewise, pedestrians might not watch for cars backing out of spots.
Injuries in Pedestrian Accidents
A pedestrian has little or no protection from an oncoming vehicle. If the two collide, the odds are that the pedestrian will face serious injury or death. If you or a loved one sustained significant injuries in a pedestrian accident, consider contacting a Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer to help you understand what compensation is available to help you recover.
The types of injuries pedestrians sustain have a lot to do with:
- Vehicle speed
- Angle of impact
- Part of the body that strikes the vehicle first
- Vehicle design and type (car, motorcycle, large truck, etc.)
The pedestrian’s center of gravity also affects the types of injuries. Most adults’ center of gravity is above the bumper, while a child’s is below it.
Traumatic brain injuries
Pedestrians often strike a vehicle’s hood or windshield in a collision. They may also hit the pavement, sidewalk or shoulder. Brain injuries can be severe and cause long-term damage.
Head and neck injuries
Injuries to the head and neck include neck sprains and strains, concussions, fractures, nerve damage, herniated discs and spinal cord injuries. These are the most common severe injuries when children collide with a vehicle.
Soft tissue damage
Muscle, tendon and ligament sprains may be less severe than other types. Still, they are the most common injury in adults following a pedestrian crash. Whether your injuries are severe or minor, the costs of medical treatment can still be high. Our Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyers can offer guidance on recovering damages for your medical expenses.
People often can have broken bones after a pedestrian accident. Breaks can happen anywhere in the body, including the skull, spine, arms and legs. Fractured bones may require surgery and a long recovery time.
Rights of Pedestrians in Boca Raton
Florida pedestrian traffic laws outline responsibilities and expectations for pedestrians and drivers. Traffic laws do not permit an absolute right of way for either group; people who use roadways have an obligation to use due care for their safety and that of others.
According to Florida statutes, motorists are generally responsible for exercising due care and avoiding hitting pedestrians in most circumstances. Drivers must yield to pedestrians lawfully crossing the street in a marked or unmarked crosswalk. They must not park or stop vehicles on sidewalks. If a driver hits you while you’re crossing legally, contact a Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer to discuss the liability in your case.
If a driver approaches a pedestrian crossing a street with a mobility device, the driver must completely stop before reaching the intersection. The driver must take precautions necessary to avoid injuring the pedestrian before proceeding.
Drivers must also stop before exiting a private driveway, parking garage, alley or building, look for pedestrians and yield to anyone coming close enough to constitute an immediate hazard.
Although drivers must yield to pedestrians, people crossing streets have obligations. They must not dart into traffic or begin crossing in front of a car with little or no time to stop properly. They must yield to vehicles if crossing mid-block or at an intersection where an overhead or underground crosswalk exists. Pedestrians must cross at right angles to the curb and avoid crossing streets diagonally.
Pedestrian Accident Compensation From the Negligent Parties
If you’re an injured pedestrian, talk to your Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer about who you can recover damages from after an accident.
The pedestrian’s car insurance
Florida is a no-fault state, meaning each party in an accident uses their own automobile insurance to pay for damages and injuries. All drivers must purchase Personal Injury Protection as part of an auto insurance plan. Although you weren’t using your vehicle, your plan’s PIP coverage can cover expenses. If you don’t have a vehicle, the car insurance policy of a relative living in the same household may cover your costs.
The driver’s car insurance
The at-fault driver’s insurance can cover initial expenses if you don’t have a car and don’t live with someone with one. PIP pays for 80% of medical costs up to $10,000. You may also be entitled to additional compensation through the bodily injury portion of the at-fault driver’s automobile insurance.
However, that is a difficult and often time-consuming process that almost always requires an experienced pedestrian accident attorney to ensure that you get the maximum compensation that you’re entitled to under Florida law.
The pedestrian’s health insurance
PIP insurance can pay for a significant amount of your expenses. Still, you may require more coverage for doctor visits, therapy, prescriptions and other medical bills. You may need to apply for disability benefits or file a claim with your health insurance.
A personal injury lawsuit with help from a pedestrian accident attorney
Pedestrian accidents can lead to devastating injuries and death. You may benefit from talking to a Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer about a claim — especially if the injured person is permanently disfigured, can no longer work or died in the accident. A personal injury case may help recover damages for you or your loved one.
Safety Tips for Pedestrians in Boca Raton
While accidents are sometimes unavoidable, you can take steps to be safe as a Boca Raton pedestrian:
- Follow Florida road laws and stay alert to traffic.
- Use crosswalks and obey pedestrian traffic signals.
- Look in all directions before crossing a street.
- Use sidewalks if they’re present.
- Walk facing oncoming traffic when no sidewalk is there.
Remember that even when an intersection has a traffic signal, drivers don’t always pay attention to them, so it’s critical to stay watchful.
What to Expect if You Hire Our Boca Raton Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
Here’s what you can expect to happen if you choose us to represent you after being injured as a pedestrian:
- Free consultations: Get your questions answered and speak directly with an knowledgeable personal injury attorney about your rights and expected outcomes.
- Leave the negotiating to us: We will contact witnesses, insurance providers, hospitals, doctors, attorneys, police, and anyone else required to settle your lawsuit.
- We’ll investigate: We will thoroughly investigate your accident and build a solid case so that you are more likely to be awarded additional compensation from insurance companies or other parties.
- You can focus on yourself: If you are recovering from injuries or dealing with anxiety, now is the time to focus on your own needs. By leaving the details of your case in the hands of an experienced attorney, you can rest assured they will do the job right.
- We work on a contingency fee basis: Contingency means you don’t have to pay us ahead of time to have our lawyers handle your case. We don’t get paid unless we recover a jury award or financial settlement for you.
Request a Free Case Consultation With a Boca Raton Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
Pedestrian accidents can be complex. You may benefit from having someone on your side to help you navigate the intricacies of figuring out who is responsible, dealing with the insurance companies and ensuring you get the compensation you deserve.
Additionally, you or your loved one must focus on recovering after an accident. You may face medical appointments and therapy, which can be time-consuming.
You can benefit from the help of a Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer. We at Eltringham Law Group can work for you. Our attorneys have extensive experience with pedestrian accidents, and we will fight to get you fair compensation. Contact a lawyer at our firm today.
Pedestrian Accident FAQs
Do I need a lawyer after a pedestrian accident?
You have no legal requirement to hire a Boca Raton pedestrian accident lawyer. However, an attorney can help you in the aftermath.
Can a pedestrian be at fault in Florida?
Most of the time, the driver is liable for a pedestrian accident. However, there are times the pedestrian may be at fault. An attorney can advise you if you have questions.
How long do I have to file a claim if I’m injured by a car as a pedestrian?
In Florida, you generally have two years to file a legal claim for compensation of damages. First, however, it’s best to immediately report the incident and seek both medical and legal consultations to address your situation.