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A pedestrian is someone who is on foot outside of an establishment, on a sidewalk, on a road, according to Raleigh law. Being involved in an accident involving a pedestrian may be a catastrophic situation. Whether the pedestrian or the driver of the car, you may now be dealing with unique factors of Raleigh pedestrian accidents that need to be resolved. A dedicated pedestrian accident lawyer would be able to help understand all of the factors involved in and after accidents.

Common Patterns

Although there are unique factors of Raleigh pedestrian accidents, there are some common pattern as well. Some of those patterns where an individual could find themselves in an accident include:

  • When a person crosses a crosswalk and is hit at an intersection
  • When someone walks on the side of the road against traffic with little to no shoulder
  • Runners who may have earbuds in and are oblivious to their surroundings
  • People who are on their cellphones and are not paying attention while walking (or a driver looking at their phone and not paying attention to pedestrians)

Guidelines and Regulations

A person has a duty to keep a reasonable lookout if they are a pedestrian. Pedestrians need to look and make sure that they can cross an intersection safely. Before a pedestrian attempts to walk across the street or crosswalk, they need to be aware of their surroundings.

They should wear reflective clothing, in order to increase a driver’s chances of seeing them. They also should not have earbuds in if they are on or around a roadway so they can hear traffic. One of the unique factors of Raleigh pedestrian accidents is the fact that contributory negligence can be brought up. Because North Carolina has contributory negligence, that can be a complete bar to recovery. If the person is any degree at fault or was negligent and could have avoided the wreck, that could also be a bar to their recovery regardless of how negligent the driver was. Therefore, it is important for pedestrians to be vigilant.

Differences Between Accidents

A pedestrian accident is usually going to be more severe than a vehicle accident because it involves a human versus a truck or a car that outweighs the average human by couple thousand pounds. There typically will be a serious injury if a pedestrian is struck by a car. There are also a lot of circumstances in which contributory negligence can be used against a pedestrian, so one has to be very careful.

There are some examples of the differences between pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents. There are rules of the road that a bicyclist has to follow, but a pedestrian has rules to follow as well. They have to follow walkway signs, red lights and guidelines like that. There are similarities and differences between those types of cases.

If a bicyclist is off their bike walking it or is at a crosswalk, riding on a sidewalk, they may be considered a pedestrian. A bicyclist on a two-lane highway is different than a bicyclist in the middle of town, on a sidewalk, or crossing an intersection.

Qualities That Determine the Injuries and Cases

If a person is in the middle of a roadway or on the shoulder of the road, one of the things that an attorney will often hear is, “Well, why weren’t you in a car?” However, there are a lot of people who do not have access to transportation. When they get off of the bus and then have to walk the rest of the way home,  proper sidewalks or lighting may not be available to them. They have to make the best of the circumstances, which could be walking on the shoulder of a two-lane road on which the speed limit is 45 miles per hour.

Although some people take that case and blame the individual for being in that situation, it is generally the only option a person may have to get home. This also does not give a vehicle the right to hit them.

Some unique factors of Raleigh pedestrian accidents would be crossing at a crosswalk when a person believes that they have the right of way and then a vehicle, trying to beat a red light, hits a pedestrian because they are not paying attention. Runners may be seen by the driver but sometimes they can try to beat traffic and are struck. Sometimes, handicapped individuals in wheelchairs have a harder time getting across the road or moving about as pedestrians. And if a driver is not paying attention, they can hit them as well.