Pedestrian Accident Lawyer in San Diego
Pedestrians are always on the losing side in a traffic accident. Unfortunately, many pedestrian accidents result in fatalities and California leads the nation in these deadly accidents. Nationwide, a pedestrian is killed every 2 hours in a traffic accident with pedestrian fatalities accounting for 14% of all traffic deaths. In California, a shocking 23% of all motor vehicle deaths are pedestrians. Even worse, pedestrian fatalities are on the rise in California despite improved focus on street safety.
While car manufacturers continue to improve the safety features of vehicles to improve the chances of surviving a crash for passengers, pedestrians have no protections in an accident. Pedestrians have a 25% chance of suffering a severe injury if they are hit by a vehicle going just 23 mph, according to the AAA, but this risk increases to 75% if the vehicle is going 39 mph — speeds that are not unreasonable on most roads in San Diego.
If you have suffered serious injuries as a pedestrian in a traffic accident, you have the right to financial compensation for your damages if someone else’s negligence or reckless behavior caused the accident. At The Law Office of Stephen Mitchell, we represent pedestrians injured in accidents with compassionate and tireless legal representation.
Common Causes of San Diego Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents are on the rise in San Diego for many reasons. Crowded intersections and busy roads contribute to the danger, and these accidents tend to occur frequently in specific intersections that have known hazards. Sometimes pedestrian accidents happen in areas without sufficient or safe crosswalks or blind spots that increase the risk for pedestrians.
The following are the most common factors that contribute to serious pedestrian traffic accidents:
- Speed. Over one-quarter of pedestrian deaths happen in areas with a speed limit of 35-40 mph.
- Alcohol. About one-third of pedestrians killed in accidents had blood alcohol concentrations over the legal limit.
- Gender. Almost three-quarters of pedestrian accident victims are male.
- Time. About three-quarters of pedestrian traffic accidents happen at night between 6 pm and 6 am.
What Happens in an Accident with an Uninsured Motorist?
There’s a very good chance of being involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist in San Diego. California ranks second in the country for the highest number of uninsured motorists at 4.1 million, but underinsured motorists are also a problem.
If you are injured as a pedestrian in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, or you were the victim of a hit and run, it may still be possible to collect the compensation you need for your medical bills and lost wages through your own insurance policy.
California law requires all motorists to carry minimum liability insurance for any injuries and damage they cause. Current minimum coverages are $15,000 per person of liability coverage, $30,000 per accident in liability coverage, and $5,000 in property damage liability coverage. While this may sound like a lot of money, it really isn’t. $15,000 is unlikely to cover even a moderate injury in a car accident. The average nonfatal disabling injury costs over $60,000 while the average cost for a death in a traffic accident is over $1 million. The vast majority of pedestrian injuries in San Diego exceed the minimum liability limits required by law.
It’s likely that you will find yourself dealing with an at-fault driver without insurance or without enough coverage to pay for your medical expenses, lost wages, and general damages like pain and suffering. While you have the right to sue the at-fault driver to pursue their personal assets, this is unlikely to recover the compensation you are owed because people who do not have adequate insurance probably do not have sufficient assets.
In this case, turning to your own car insurance policy can help. If you have uninsured (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage and personal injury protection (PIP), your policy will pay for your damages if you are hurt in an accident. PIP coverage works by paying for medical bills while you wait for payment from UIM coverage or your third-party claim with no co-pays, even if you lack health insurance.
Free Consultation with a Pedestrian Injury Lawyer in San Diego
Pedestrian accidents are among the most serious and almost always result in significant injuries and fatalities. If you have suffered injuries in a pedestrian accident caused by someone else’s reckless or negligent behavior, it’s important to take action right away to protect your legal rights and fight for the compensation you deserve. Do not speak with the insurance company until you seek experienced legal counsel; anything you say to the insurance company can be used against you to deny or limit your claim!
At The Law Office of Stephen Mitchell, we represent pedestrian accident victims in San Diego with tireless and compassionate legal representation. We will serve as your advocate throughout the claims process so you can focus on healing while we investigate your accident, gather evidence, and negotiate with the insurance adjuster on your behalf in pursuit of the compensation you deserve.
Call The Law Office of Stephen Mitchell today at 619-802-0190 to schedule your free case review with a San Diego, CA pedestrian accident lawyer to explore your legal options.