Legal Representation for Injured Pedestrians
Like so many beach communities‚ Carlsbad‚ California is a walker’s paradise situated amongst a number of major traffic corridors. With roughly 31 different parks to choose from and 7 miles of gorgeous coastline to amble along‚ there is something for everyone to peruse and plenty of ways to get there. Running the length of the county‚ Carlsbad State Beach is one of the most popular destinations in all of San Diego and has plenty of access points for both motorists and pedestrians alike. While situated directly off of Palomar Airport Rd. to the south is Veteran’s Park with its incredible view of The Crossings Golf Course and the Flower Fields.
Unfortunately‚ this co-existence between pedestrian and motorist can lead to some harrowing‚ if not deadly‚ encounters. According to a 2011 report submitted by the California Highway Patrol‚ over 13‚000 pedestrians were injured or killed in California; that same year 33 walkers were injured in Carlsbad‚ including one fatality. Tragically‚ there have been a number of reported pedestrian accidents lately‚ some involving more than one victim. These types of accidents are avoidable and not without serious consequence for both victim and responsible party.
If you or someone you love has been severely injured or killed by a careless motorist‚ there may be grounds to pursue legal action. Reach out to the skilled Carlsbad personal injury attorneys at the Jurewitz to discuss your options in a free and confidential consultation. Our knowledgeable personal injury team will be able to answer all of your questions and help you pursue the best possible outcome for both you and your family. Contact us today at our Carlsbad office by calling (760) 585-4640.
Do I Need A Pedestrian Accident Lawyer?
You may think that you have a clear-cut injury claim against the driver caused your injuries. Keep in mind that the insurance company for the motorist who hit you is typically incentivized to find another explanation to deny your pedestrian injury claim to avoid paying you anything or reducing the size of the check.
Be cautious about signing any paperwork presented by an insurance company, and never provide any kind of recorded or written statement, no matter how routine an agent might make it seem. You might accidentally say something that could undermine your claim, especially if taken out of context.
An insurer is only interested in protecting its bottom line. An attorney is committed to making decisions that serve your best interests, however, so let your legal counsel handle all the representation for you.
You could be offered a lump sum settlement to resolve your case, although it may be far short of what you are actually entitled to. A lawyer with a solid personal injury background has a much better understanding of how much your case is worth and can negotiate a just settlement or file a lawsuit when the insurance company refuses to make an acceptable offer.
Why Choose Jurewitz To Handle My Pedestrian Accident Case?
Firm co-founder and managing partner Ross Jurewitz has nearly 20 years of legal experience and is a proud member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, to which fewer than one percent of lawyers in the United States are members.
The San Diego Business Journal named Mr. Jurewitz Best of the Bar in 2015. He was also named a Super Lawyer by Southern California Super Lawyers in 2016, 2017, and 2018.
Jurewitz has been a corporate sponsor of Silent Soldier, America Walks, and the League of American Bicyclists since 2013. Our firm has office locations in downtown San Diego and Carlsbad.
Our firm also provides the No Fee Guarantee; our legal services will come at no upfront cost to you. We only get paid when you receive a monetary award.
Types of Pedestrian Accident Cases We Handle
Common causes of pedestrian accidents in Carlsbad include:
- Failure to maintain vehicle — California drivers are expected to properly maintain their vehicles; some accidents are the result of mechanical issues that are technically beyond a driver’s control but are still their responsibility.
- Construction zone violations — Under California Vehicle Code § 21370, the California State Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is authorized, while engaged in the construction of a state highway upon new alignment, to restrict the use of and regulate the movement of traffic on any highway intersecting a construction project at or near the place of an intersection whenever such work interferes with or endangers the safe movement of traffic through the workzone.
- Medical emergency — It may be possible that a driver suffers a sudden medical condition that impacts their ability to control their motor vehicle and could result in a pedestrian getting hit.
- Failure to obey traffic signs or lights — Pedestrians who are lawfully crossing streets may be struck by drivers who disregard traffic lights or signs; many drivers fail to see pedestrians in these types of accidents.
- Driving Under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs — DUI is a criminal offense in California, and a drunk or drugged driving offense causing a pedestrian accident often results in criminal charges for the driver. The criminal case allows the state to impose punishment such as imprisonment and fines, but a victim must file their own civil action to recover damages. It is important to understand that the two cases are separate; a driver who is avoids a DUI conviction could still be held civilly liable.
- Inclement weather — While the weather is often very favorable in the San Diego area, rain or other bad weather impacts driving visibility. Drivers may encounter difficulties seeing pedestrians under these conditions.
- Defective parts — When a mechanical issue within the vehicle causes a pedestrian accident, the manufacturer of a defective part may bear liability for injuries. There could also be cases in which a service center failed to make proper repairs.
- Driver fatigue — Many motorists have tried to fight through drowsiness while behind the wheel, and there is a high risk to pedestrians as well as other vehicles in these situations. Pedestrian accidents can particularly occur when tired drivers fail to be on alert for pedestrians.
- Reckless driving — California law prohibits reckless driving, a citation for which can be an element of proof in a pedestrian accident claim.
- Improper or illegal turns — Certain prohibited turns in restricted areas can endanger innocent pedestrians.
- Distracted driving — Cell phones are widely regarded as the most common kind of distraction for drivers, but they are from being the only kind. Fiddling with the radio or dashboard controls or using GPS technology, as well as other possible distractions within a vehicle, can take a driver’s attention off the road long enough for them to not see pedestrians.\
- Defective highways or sidewalks — There may be certain pedestrian accidents that stem from possibly unsafe roadways or sidewalks for which governmental entities could be responsible for correcting such conditions.
- Speeding — A significant amount of pedestrian crashes involves drivers simply going too fast for the road and weather conditions. Many offenders are determined to be operating in excess of posted speed limits at the times of the accident.
- Other traffic violations — Other California traffic law violations could also cause or contribute to a pedestrian accident.
- Bicycle accidents – Pedestrians can also get injured by oncoming bicycles and other similar conveyances. Irresponsible bicyclists can be held liable for pedestrian injuries.
In general, when drivers come to certain intersections, they may be more focused on the movements of other vehicles rather than pedestrians. As a result, some drivers cause pedestrian accidents because they paid little or no attention to people crossing streets.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics
The California Office of Traffic Safety reported that 867 pedestrians were killed and more than14,000 pedestrians were injured on California roadways. The pedestrian death rate increased 32.8 percent between 2012 and 2016.
Almost 8,000 people were killed in pedestrian-related traffic incidents in California between 2006 and 2016. The state pedestrian fatality rate is nearly 30 percent higher than the national average.
The Office of Traffic Safety offers these safety tips to pedestrians:
- When walking, wear bright colors and otherwise make yourself visible, including carrying a flashlight when it’s dark
- Stay on the sidewalk and don’t jaywalk; never assume a driver can see you
- Don’t walk and text at the same time
- Always cross at the crosswalk, obey traffic signals, stay on alert for turning vehicles, and look before you cross
Pedestrian accidents can result in head, neck, or spine trauma, or bone fractures and breaks, among other injuries. Fatalities an occur in some extreme, tragic instances.
In February 2019, CNBC reported that the Governors Highway Safety Association said that pedestrian fatalities in the U.S. increased 41 percent since 2008 and now accounted for 16 percent of all traffic fatalities. Along with Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and Texas, California accounted for nearly half of pedestrian fatalities in the first half of 2018.
Your Right‚ Our Fight – Contact our Carlsbad Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
The Carlsbad car accident attorneys at the Jurewitz are strongly committed to the rights of personal injury victims and their families. We are passionate litigators‚ who believe that only through personal representation and fierce litigation do we provide the kind of service our clients deserve. We will pursue the guilty party to the fullest extent of the law and secure the compensation you deserve. Contact us today at (760) 585-4640 to discuss your options in a free consultation.