The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says “at some point in the day, everyone is a pedestrian.” Despite many pedestrian awareness safety campaigns aimed at both pedestrians and motorists, pedestrian accident s, injuries and fatalities remain high. According to the latest data available, in 2018 there were 6,238 pedestrian deaths nationwide, the most deaths since 1990 and a 3% increase from the year prior. The CDC estimated 137,000 pedestrians were treated in emergency departments for nonfatal crash-related injuries in 2107.
NHTSA data does not account for non-traffic accidents which occur in driveways or parking lots. The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) estimates 7,680 pedestrians died in traffic or non-traffic incidents in 2018. This is an additional 1,442 deaths from NHTSA figures. Pedestrian accidents involving a person on foot and a motor vehicle can occur anywhere:
- Parking lots / parking garages
- Rural roads.
If you have been hurt, or a loved one has died, due to being struck by a car in South Carolina, attorney Mark Bringardner can help you recover the maximum, full and fair compensation you are entitled to for your medical care expenses, rehabilitation, lost earnings, and pain and suffering. If a loved one was killed in a pedestrian accident, a surviving spouse, children or other heirs may be entitled to wrongful death compensation for funeral expenses, final medical expenses, loss of financial support, and other damages.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics
According to NHTSA reports, in 2018, most pedestrian deaths occurred:
- At night (76%).
- On the open road (74%) vs. intersections (25%)
- In urban settings (79%).
Of all the days of the week, the largest number of fatalities occurred on Saturdays (1,031), and in keeping with trends, the majority of these deaths occurred at night (837).
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Drivers are responsible for looking out for pedestrians on South Carolina roads. The major causes of pedestrian accidents are distracted driving, drunk driving, speeding, and failing to yield. A common scenario is a left turn accident where a driver is yielding to oncoming traffic. They may look for other vehicles, even motorcycles and bicyclists, but fail to look for pedestrians. Slower moving elderly adults, disabled people, and children are especially vulnerable to being struck by a car. Quiet hybrid and electric vehicles are also more likely to hit pedestrians, as they may not be able to hear them coming from behind.
Types of Pedestrian Accident Injuries
Pedestrians are extremely vulnerable to catastrophic, life-changing injuries or death when struck by a vehicle. Generally, the faster a vehicle is travelling, the more serious the impact and more serious the injury. The most common injuries we see in South Carolina pedestrian accidents include:
- Bone fractures
- Blunt force injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries.
What to do Following a South Carolina Pedestrian Crash
You should seek medical treatment as soon as possible following a pedestrian accident. This will establish the link between the accident and your injuries and create a record of the medical treatment you needed. You should never delay treatment or wait to see a doctor following an accident. When possible, you should take down notes about the accident, including:
- Time of the accident
- Exact location of accident
- Where you were coming from and what you were doing
- The direction the vehicle that hit you was coming from
- Any statements made by parties involved
- Names and contact information of parties involved and witnesses.
If you are unable to write, this information can be recorded in a voice memo, or relayed to a family member or witness. If you are able to safely do so, take photographs of the accident scene, your injuries, tire skid marks, damaged vehicles and any damaged property, like damaged stop signs or light poles. If someone did not report the accident to the police, do so immediately. The police report will be important evidence and documentation of accident details and parties involved.
You will need to report the accident to your insurance company, if you have one. Your own car insurance policy may cover you even if you were not driving. Even if you partially contributed to the accident, under South Carolina comparative negligence laws, you may be entitled to partial compensation. A lawyer can also help establish and negotiate down the amount that you may have contributed to the accident.
Talk to a Lawyer About Your Pedestrian Accident Case
An experienced South Carolina pedestrian accident attorney can help you recover compensation for your injuries following an accident. Once you hire an attorney, they can handle communications with insurance adjusters, conduct additional investigations as necessary, and negotiate a settlement in a pedestrian accident lawsuit. Contact attorney Mark Bringardner today for a free consultation. As part of our contingency fee agreement, you will owe nothing unless we recover money for you.