Were you hit by a car as a pedestrian? We can help you get maximum compensation for your pedestrian accident.
Hiring an experienced pedestrian accident attorney is critical to get maximum compensation for your injuries. Kitay Law Offices’ attorneys are ready to fight the insurance companies after you have been injured in a pedestrian accident. The insurance company will have a lawyer on their side. So, make sure you have one, as well.
Pedestrian Accident Causes
Walking is our oldest means of transportation. Unfortunately, it can also be very dangerous. As of 2018, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 6,283 pedestrians died in traffic crashes. Sadly, this is a 3% increase from the prior year. Finally, this is the highest number of deaths since 1990.
As a pedestrian, you are exposed to the world. If you are struck by a car, you have nothing to protect your skin, bones, muscles, and organs. As a result, pedestrians can suffer severe injuries even in a low-speed accident.
Examples of Pedestrian Accident Causes
Here are some common causes of pedestrian accidents in Pennsylvania:
- The at-fault driver did not stop at a posted stop sign
- Distracted driving
- The at-fault driver was not paying attention
- Cell phone use when the driver should have been watching the road
- Driving faster than the posted speed limit
- Making at turn at an intersection without looking to see if a pedestrian was walking across the street
- Driving while drunk or under the influence of other drugs
- Failure to yield at a crosswalk
- Poor road design
- Backing up without looking
- Failing to properly use a turn signal
- Not using headlights at night or in bad weather
- Carelessly passing a car that is stopped for a pedestrian crossing the street
If you are injured in a pedestrian accident, you have the right to compensation for your injuries. Make sure you have an attorney representing you who understands the unique challenges in these cases. Therefore, contact a pedestrian accident attorney at Kitay Law Offices for a free consultation at 888-KITAYLAW. In addition, you can view our guide which will help find the best personal injury attorney for your needs.
Pedestrian Accident Injuries
Since pedestrians are completely exposed in an accident, your injuries are more likely to be severe than if you were hit while sitting in a vehicle. Further, even low-speed traffic crashes can cause significant injuries that could change your life forever. Most of the time, pedestrians really don’t have the ability to avoid a collision since cars travel so quickly on the roads. Instead, pedestrians typically take the full force of the crash. Under the law, what you end up with we call “personal injuries.”
Common Forms of Pedestrian Accident Injuries:
While pedestrian accidents in Pennsylvania can result in a wide variety of injuries, here are some common ones:
- Cuts, scrapes, and bruises
- Damage to internal organs from the force of the impact
- Fractures of the extremities, such as to the arms, legs, fingers, or toes
- Head trauma, which can include concussions, fractures, traumatic brain injury (TBI), or even complete loss of consciousness
- Spinal cord injuries, which may include spinal vertebrae fractures, disc protrusions, disc herniations, radiating pain, and even paralysis
- Cracked teeth and other dental injuries
- Eye injuries that may cause loss of vision
- Mental health struggles, such as stress, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder
Therefore, it is highly important that you hire an attorney with lots of experience. Pedestrian accident injuries can be very severe. Importantly, while your physical injuries may cause extreme pain and suffering, your entire life will be affected. So, contact the pedestrian accident attorneys in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices. Call us at 888-KITAYLAW or contact us online. We will provide a free consultation and explain how we can help.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics
Even with sidewalks, crosswalks, walkways, and walkable bridges, pedestrian accidents still happen. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that a pedestrian dies from a traffic crash every 88 minutes. Alarmingly, almost half of those fatal accidents involve alcohol. Further, fatal pedestrian accidents are most likely to occur mid-block, in urban areas, or during the nighttime.
As of 2017, men accounted for 70% of the pedestrian accidents in the United States. Thirteen pedestrians were struck by a car every day in 2014. In addition, Americans were over seven times more likely to die as a pedestrian than from some sort of natural disaster between 2005-2014.
Specifically in Pennsylvania, pedestrian accident fatalities have dramatically increased in recent years. From 2015 to 2018, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) estimates that annual deaths have grown from 153 to 201. Therefore, it is clear that pedestrian accidents impact people and their families all too often.
To ensure that you receive fair compensation for your injuries, you will need an experienced lawyer. The pedestrian accident attorneys in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices are ready to help. Contact us online or at 888-KITAYLAW for a free consultation. We will review your case and develop a plan together.
Pennsylvania Pedestrian Law
The law in Pennsylvania covers more than just cars on the roads. The Pennsylvania Pedestrian Law tells us what we must do to be safe on the roads while walking. Here are some rules you must follow while a pedestrian:
- Follow the instructions from a police officer who is controlling traffic
- Obey pedestrian control signals that are installed at intersections
- Take care to ensure the road is clear before attempting to cross the street
Consequences of Not Following the Law
Importantly, many of the protections we have as pedestrians disappear when crossing the street in the middle of a block. The law protects you the most when you cross at an intersection with a crosswalk. Therefore, if you try to cross somewhere else, the following consequences occur:
- You must yield the right of way to any vehicles that are driving along the road if you cross mid-block
- If there is an overhead pedestrian tunnel and you don’t use it, you must yield to cars on the road
- Crossing an intersection diagonally is not allowed unless the traffic control devices are specifically created for this purpose. In addition, you can cross diagonally if a police officer who is controlling traffic tells you to do so.
Further, make sure you use the sidewalk along the road. If one is available, you must use it. If the road does not have a sidewalk, pedestrians can walk along the shoulder. Finally, if the road has neither a sidewalk nor a shoulder, pedestrians are allowed to walk as far along the side of the road as possible.
If you were involved in a pedestrian accident, you will need to explain all the circumstances to your lawyer. An experienced lawyer will be able to determine whether you followed each of the laws we have discussed here. The experienced pedestrian accident lawyers in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices are ready to fight for your rights. Therefore, contact us today at 888-KITAYLAW or reach out to us online for a free consultation.
Should I Hire a Lawyer for My Pedestrian Accident in Pennsylvania?
Yes, you should absolutely hire a lawyer for your pedestrian accident in Pennsylvania. In addition, you want to ensure that your lawyer has lots of experience with these cases. As you can see from the statistics and information on the law we have provided, these cases can be quite complicated. In addition, the injuries you suffer are more likely to be severe. As a result, your pedestrian accident is likely to affect every aspect of your life. Because of this, it is more important than ever that you get maximum compensation for your injuries.
When filing your claim, you can be sure the at-fault party will have an attorney representing their interests. You don’t want to be at a disadvantage simply because you don’t have an attorney. Fortunately, the attorneys at Kitay Law Offices have represented victims of pedestrian accidents for over 25 years. Contact an experienced pedestrian accident attorney for a free consultation online or at 888-KITAYLAW.
What are My Rights After a Pedestrian Accident in Pennsylvania?
After suffering a pedestrian accident in Pennsylvania, you have the right to full compensation for your injuries. As we have discussed, pedestrian accidents are quite different from accidents where you are a passenger in a motor vehicle. In those cases, we would have to discuss whether you are entitled to Full Tort or Limited Tort recovery. As a pedestrian, however, you can recover compensation for any and all effects the crash has had on your life.
Your pedestrian accident attorney will help obtain compensation for your injuries. Under the law, the compensation you receive is called “Damages.” Importantly, there are two broad categories of Damages. These two categories are called “Special Damages” and “General Damages.” Some examples of Special Damages you can recover are:
Outstanding Medical Bills
Especially with the severe injuries that occur in many pedestrian accidents, you may need extensive medical treatment to recover. As a result, medical bills may pile up. Therefore, you should receive compensation for the cost of those medical bills.
Future Medical Treatment
Unfortunately, you may never fully recover from your injuries. As a result, you may require ongoing medical care for several years. In some cases, you may need treatment for the rest of your life. Thus, you should receive compensation so that you don’t need to bear the cost of that future medical care.
Since pedestrian accident injuries are often significant, you may need to miss time from work while you try to recover. Sometimes, your doctor may tell you to stay home from work. In other cases, you may try to return to work but it causes you too much pain. Further, your employer may not have any easier work that you can do while you go through treatment. You should recover your lost wages, as a result.
Lost Future Earnings
You may never be able to return to work after your pedestrian accident. Also, you may have been on track to progress in your career and your injuries prevent that from happening. If either of these occur, you will never earn the same wages as you could have before the accident. Therefore, you can receive compensation for these damages.
Can I also receive money for my pain and suffering?
Yes, you can receive compensation for your pain and suffering as a result of your pedestrian accident in Pennsylvania. Under the law, these are “General Damages.” Here is a list of General Damages you can obtain for your pedestrian accident in Pennsylvania:
Pain and Suffering
As we have discussed, pedestrian accidents often cause severe injuries. Importantly, your injuries may cause significant pain and suffering. Hopefully, you will be able to make a full recovery after receiving treatment for your injuries. Unfortunately, you may never make a full recovery. You should receive compensation for your pain and suffering covering both the past and the future.
Mental and Emotional Distress
In addition to suffering physical injuries, your entire life may have been affected by your pedestrian accident. This may have caused severe anxiety, fear, and stress. In fact, it is quite common to experience post-traumatic stress after a pedestrian accident in Pennsylvania. Treatment can help you keep it under control, but it may never resolve.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life
Due to your pedestrian accident you may never get back to your normal life as it was. As a result, you may not be able to participate in many activities you used to do, such as exercising, playing with your children, or taking a long walk. And if you have trouble sitting in one place for a long period of time, you may not even be able to enjoy going to the movies.
Disfigurement or Scarring
Your injuries may have caused visible scars or other marks. In addition, pedestrian accidents can sometimes result in amputations. Most commonly, someone may lose their leg due to a pedestrian accident as this is often a primary point of contact with a vehicle. You can receive compensation for these damages.
Especially if you suffer severe scarring or an amputation, going out in public may be embarrassing. Fortunately, the law takes this into account and you can receive compensation for the embarrassment you experience.
Pedestrian accidents in Pennsylvania cause all sorts of damages. Further, having an experienced attorney by your side is incredibly important. Don’t put yourself at a disadvantage simply by trying to go it alone. Instead, contact a pedestrian accident attorney in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices. We will explain the law and fight the insurance companies for maximum compensation. You can reach us online or at 888-KITAYLAW for a free consultation.
Who Pays for My Medical Bills After a Pedestrian Accident in Pennsylvania?
Pennsylvania law is complicated when it comes to your medical bills after a pedestrian accident. We all assume that the at-fault party should pay our medical bills. However, it is more complex than that. Importantly, this is another example of why it is so important to hire an experienced pedestrian accident attorney.
In these cases, your medical bills will go through several steps:
- If you carry your own car insurance, your policy will include coverage for medical bills. This is called “Personal Injury Protection” insurance, or PIP. Importantly, the law requires your policy to include at least $5,000.00 in coverage for this purpose. Even if you don’t have your own policy, this rule will still apply if you live with a relative who owns a vehicle with insurance.
- Once the coverage on your car insurance is used up, your medical bills are sent to your health insurance carrier. Once received, your health insurance carrier will process the bills according to the terms of your policy. Importantly, this means that your health insurance may only pay a portion of the bill. Therefore, you may still be responsible for a co-pay, deductible, or co-insurance.
- After the above steps are completed, you will receive a bill from your doctor indicating how much you owe. As a result, this outstanding amount becomes part of the damages in your case.
Amazingly, getting your medical bills paid after your pedestrian accident can become even more complicated than what we have outlined here. As a result, it is extremely important to hire a pedestrian accident attorney who understands this system. The lawyers at Kitay Law Offices have been doing it for over 25 years and we can help you.
How Long Does it Take to Settle a Pedestrian Accident Case in Pennsylvania?
There is no simple answer to this question. Importantly, pedestrian accident cases must either settle or be put into court within two years of the accident. This deadline is called the Statute of Limitations.
While every case is different, pedestrian accident cases usually settle within 1.5 years of when your accident occurred. Most often, this applies when your case resolves without entering the court system. We have written extensively about the Personal Injury Timeline in Pennsylvania. You can also download a quick reference guide.
If your case does not settle outside of court, your attorney will fight for you in the court system. This process is called “litigation” and it involves many steps. Again, we have an entire page on our website dedicated to explaining the Personal Injury Litigation Timeline. Also, you can download a handy reference sheet that shows the litigation process in Pennsylvania.
When you hire an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices, we will review this information with you. That way, you understand the process throughout your case. Contact us for a free consultation online or at 888-KITAYLAW.
Pedestrian Safety Tips
In addition to following the rules for pedestrian safety in Pennsylvania, PennDOT has provided several safety tips you can use to stay safe while walking. Here are some of them:
- Do not cross between parked cars
- Look left, right, then left again before starting to cross the street
- Look out for turning vehicles at an intersection, even if you have the right of way
- Make eye contact with approaching drivers to ensure they know you are trying to cross the street
However, pedestrians following these safety tips can still end up severely injured in an accident. When this happens, contact a pedestrian accident attorney in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices. Importantly, we have extensive experience with pedestrian accident cases and will fight for the best settlement possible. Remember, you can contact us online or at 888-KITAYLAW for a free consultation.
How can I help make my community safer for pedestrians?
Yes, there are many ways you can help make your community safer for pedestrians. The Federal Highway Administration provides an extensive list of many organizations you can join to raise awareness of the dangers pedestrians face. Further, a few of these organizations include:
- America Walks: This is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing walkable communities throughout the United States. Interestingly, they also partner with the Every Body Walk! collaborative to encourage walking as part of a healthy lifestyle.
- Project for Public Spaces: The group seeks to help create and maintain public spaces, which helps ensure safe places for pedestrians.
- Keep Kids Alive Drive 25®: Their mission is to keep the streets safe for all, including pedestrians. Primarily, they focus on neighborhoods and ensuring drivers keep their speed at or below 25 miles per hour.
Even with these efforts, however, pedestrian accidents still happen. When it does, you can always contact an experienced pedestrian accident attorney at Kitay Law Offices online or at 888-KITAYLAW for a free consultation.