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 Pedestrian risk often stems from drivers ignoring the law

On Behalf of | Mar 15, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Although there are common causes of auto-pedestrian accidents including distraction, speeding and driving under the influence, one important issue is that drivers are simply unaware of the traffic laws regarding pedestrians. Regardless of how the accident occurred, people who are dealing with the aftermath should have a grasp of what options they have available.

Drivers are failing to yield to pedestrians

Georgia law is clear about how drivers are expected to behave when they encounter a pedestrian. They are expected to show due care to avoid a crash. If it is necessary to draw the pedestrian’s attention, the driver can use their horn. If a person appears to be confused, intoxicated or is incapacitated, the driver must use precautions. This is particularly true with children.

Drivers must wait until a pedestrian crosses the street when they are using the crosswalk. If a pedestrian is approaching the roadway within one lane of half the roadway, they must also wait for the pedestrian to cross. Drivers cannot go around pedestrians nor can they simply start driving even if the traffic light has changed. Vehicles cannot pass another vehicle that is stopping for a pedestrian.

Despite these requirements, the roads are becoming increasingly dangerous for pedestrians. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says a failure to yield is a major issue. The most recent numbers are for 2022. The Governors Highway Safety Association says that more than 7,500 pedestrians lost their lives in the United States that year. This was the worst total in more than four decades.

Pedestrians injured in a crash should know what steps to take

The laws are in place to try and keep everyone safe. Unfortunately, many drivers do not know the law or choose to ignore them. This puts them and others in jeopardy of injuries and loss of life.

When there is a motor vehicle accident involving a pedestrian, there is a major chance of severe injuries. Pedestrians have no protection and can have broken bones, spinal cord injuries, head injuries and more. This can cost them financially, personally and professionally leaving them wondering how they can move forward. There are ways to hold drivers accountable and recover compensation and knowing how to proceed is essential.