If You Were Hit by a Car in Atlanta, Georgia While a Pedestrian, You May be Eligible for an Insurance Payout.
Our Atlanta pedestrian accident lawyers are here to advise you on the next steps and help you seek fair compensation.
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Jaywalking Accidents – Statistics in Georgia
If you were a pedestrian and hit by a car, you are not alone. According to Georgia Traffic Safety Facts by the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, 236 pedestrians were hit by a car in 2019, which was a significant increase (22 percent) from those accidents reported in 2015.
A total of $171 million was spent on hospitalization and emergency room visits for Georgia pedestrians involved in motor vehicle accidents. While you may think the majority of these cases are caused by bad weather that prevents the driver from seeing clearly, nearly 90 percent of reported accidents happen in good weather.
Statistics of Pedestrian Fatalities in Georgia
According to the Governor’s Highway Safety Association’s report called “Pedestrian Traffic Fatalities by State,” there was a 20% increase in pedestrian accident deaths between January and June 2020, compared to a 5% increase in all other car accidents fatalities in the country. A significant portion of pedestrian fatalities occurs as a result of drunk driving with 48 percent of traffic fatalities involving alcohol.
Accidents Involving Pedestrians are Often More Dangerous Than Those Involving cars and Trucks
Pedestrian accident victims may suffer catastrophic injuries including spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury, neck injuries, and broken bones.
The report discussed above also showed a total of 1,160 pedestrian accidents occurred in the Atlanta- Sandy Springs-Roswell area from 2010 to 2019, with a fatality rate of about two pedestrian deaths per 100,000 pedestrians every single day.
Most of the internal injuries, bodily injuries, or fatal injuries sustained by pedestrians in traffic accidents are caused after the initial collision with the car, particularly when a person hits the ground or another object at high speed resulting in extensive trauma to the head and body.
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Atlanta State Law for Pedestrians
Atlanta state law requires that all pedestrians follow traffic signals and only cross the road at a specified crossing when the traffic lights indicate green for pedestrians. When crossing at a specified crosswalk, vehicles are required to give way to pedestrians.
On the other hand, if pedestrians are crossing at an unmarked crosswalk, vehicles have the right of way. Pedestrians are required to allow enough time for vehicles to yield and should not leave the sidewalk and attempt to cross in front of a moving car.
Is Jaywalking Legal in Georgia?
The term ‘jaywalking’ itself is not a term that’s legally recognized by Georgia state law. However, colloquially the term refers to a person attempting to cross a road where there is no official crosswalk.
Jaywalking is not illegal in Atlanta, Georgia, and pedestrians can cross at any point, as long as they yield to motorists. The onus is on both pedestrians and drivers to be mindful while sharing the road.
Filing a Pedestrian Accident Lawsuit for Negligence
If you’re a pedestrian who has been injured by a motorist while walking outdoors in Atlanta, Georgia, you may be entitled to file an insurance claim with the help of an Atlanta pedestrian accidents lawyer. However, you’ll need to be able to prove that the driver was negligent or that they failed to take reasonable care. This means that the at-fault driver was irresponsible or careless, resulting in another person’s injury.
For your claim to be successful, you’ll need to show that the recklessness or negligence of the driver caused your accident and injury.
For example, the driver may have been on their mobile phone and distracted, which resulted in an accident.
When seeking a claim, pedestrians should be sure that they are aware of who is at fault. Statistics show that pedestrians who are found by a jury to be more than 50% at fault will not be compensated. If you’re found to be 50% at fault or less, you’ll receive a lower settlement for the percentage of your responsibility. For example, if you’re found to be 20% at fault, you’ll receive the awarded settlement minus a 20% penalty.
Negligence per se
In the case where a motorist blatantly breaks the law, it’s a lot easier to file a claim. For example, if an errant driver didn’t stop at a red light or a crosswalk and hit a pedestrian, this is considered “negligence per se.”
What Kinds of Damages are Available in Atlanta Pedestrian Accidents?
If you’re a pedestrian hit by a car, you may be eligible for financial compensation, also known as compensatory damages. Here are the common types of damages you may be entitled to claim:
Economic damages are a financial pay out that covers medical care for treatment, medication, physical therapy, property damage, and lost income if you’re unable to work due to the accident. Depending on how severe the injuries are, you may be entitled to a pay out to cover lifelong nursing care.
Damages for fatalities
In the case where a pedestrian is hit by a car and doesn’t survive, their family can seek a wrongful death action against the negligent driver. These tend to cover loss of income, medical expenses, funeral costs, and any additional financial losses that the family faces without the injury victim’s contribution, most of which could be paid out by the driver’s motor vehicle liability insurance. In some cases, the family can claim for their emotional loss or funeral expenses.
Pedestrians may be entitled to additional damages, such as for the trauma experienced and the loss of quality of life. These damages are a lot harder to estimate and usually consider the distress caused by the accident and its impact on the pedestrian’s lifestyle.
Here is a list of the most commonly asked questions for pedestrian accidents in Atlanta, Georgia:
What types of injuries are common in Atlanta pedestrian accidents?
The most common injuries reported include head injuries, nerve damage, internal organ damage, broken bones, skin burns, and traumatic brain injury.
Can I reduce my risk of injury in pedestrian accidents in Atlanta, GA?
While it’s not possible to predict or control another person’s behavior, there are some precautions you can take to reduce your risk of being hurt as a pedestrian. We recommend only crossing at crosswalks, wearing bright and reflective clothing, and avoiding poorly lit areas at night.
What causes Atlanta pedestrian accidents and traffic fatalities?
The most common causes include speeding, using a mobile phone while driving, drinking and driving, not following the road rules, and careless or reckless driving.
How common are pedestrian accidents in Atlanta?
Pedestrian accidents are more common in Atlanta, Georgia than you may think. When they occur, they can often be serious and sometimes fatal.
When and where do pedestrian accidents happen?
The majority of pedestrian accidents reported happened in areas that were not intersections. They also occur in normal weather, not just when it’s raining or snowing.
Do Atlanta drivers have to stop when pedestrians are in the crosswalk completely?
Yes, Atlanta, Georgia drivers are required to stop and give way to pedestrians crossing at crosswalks.
Contact an Atlanta Pedestrian Accidents Lawyer today
Pedestrian accidents can be difficult to claim, especially as an individual negotiating with insurance companies. Often, the insurance adjuster may claim the pedestrian was in violation of traffic laws. If you or a loved one is a pedestrian hit by a car, you can trust our Atlanta Pedestrian Accident Lawyers to fight for you and your family to help you get the maximum compensation you’re entitled to.
If you’re a pedestrian involved in an accident, you may be entitled to a compensation claim. Trust a personal injury lawyer to help file your pedestrian accident claim.