Fort Myers Pedestrian Accident Attorney
Injured by a Negligent Driver While Walking the Streets of Fort Myers, FL?
Pedestrian accidents are some of the most severe accidents on the road. When a pedestrian is struck by a vehicle, the pedestrian is almost always injured, and sometimes even killed. The driver of the vehicle is almost always at fault. The driver failed to exercise due care, and as a result, someone was hurt or worse.
At The Dellutri Law Group, PA, we know how devastating a pedestrian accident can be. Our Fort Myers team can help you hold the negligent driver accountable for their actions and maximize your entitled compensation.
Call (800) 391-4337 today to speak with one of our pedestrian accident attorneys in Fort Myers.
What Causes Pedestrian Accidents?
A pedestrian accident is an incident in which a person who is traveling on foot, whether walking or running, is involved in a collision with a motor vehicle. These accidents can result in a range of injuries, from minor scrapes and bruises to severe injuries or even fatalities.
Here are some of the common causes of pedestrian accidents involving motor vehicles:
- Distracted Driving: Drivers who are distracted by activities like texting, talking on the phone, or adjusting the radio are less likely to notice pedestrians and may not react in time to avoid an accident.
- Speeding: Excessive speed reduces a driver's reaction time and stopping distance, making it more difficult to avoid collisions with pedestrians who suddenly appear in the driver's path.
- Failure to Yield: Drivers not yielding the right of way to pedestrians at crosswalks, intersections, and other designated pedestrian areas can lead to accidents.
- Impaired Driving: Alcohol or drug impairment impairs a driver's judgment, coordination, and reaction time, making them more likely to strike pedestrians.
- Reckless Driving: Aggressive or reckless behaviors, such as running red lights, making unsafe lane changes, and overtaking other vehicles at high speeds, can increase the risk of pedestrian accidents.
- Poor Visibility: Pedestrian accidents are more likely to occur in low light conditions, bad weather, or at night when visibility is reduced for both drivers and pedestrians.
- Jaywalking: Pedestrians crossing streets outside of designated crosswalks or against traffic signals put themselves at higher risk of being involved in an accident.
- Vehicle Blind Spots: Some vehicles have large blind spots that may make it difficult for drivers to see pedestrians, especially when making turns or changing lanes.
- Inadequate Signage and Infrastructure: Poorly designed or maintained roadways, inadequate signage, and lack of crosswalks or pedestrian signals can contribute to pedestrian accidents.
- Driver Fatigue: Fatigued drivers are more likely to have reduced attention and slower reaction times, making them less able to avoid pedestrian accidents.
- Inexperienced or Unlicensed Drivers: Novice drivers or those without proper training may struggle to anticipate and respond to pedestrian hazards effectively.
- Turning Vehicles: Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable when vehicles are making turns, as drivers may not always notice them while scanning for oncoming traffic.
- Large Vehicles: Trucks, buses, and other large vehicles have more significant blind spots and require more time and space to stop, increasing the risk of accidents involving pedestrians.
Pedestrian Laws in Florida
Pedestrian laws in Florida are designed to ensure the safety of individuals who are walking or traveling on foot. These laws help regulate pedestrian behavior and interactions with motor vehicles.
Here are some key pedestrian laws in Florida:
- Right-of-Way at Crosswalks (Section 316.130, Florida Statutes): At marked crosswalks and unmarked crosswalks at intersections, drivers must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians who are in the crosswalk or approaching it. Pedestrians must not suddenly leave the curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of an oncoming vehicle that is so close it is impossible for the driver to yield.
- Traffic Control Signals (Section 316.075, Florida Statutes): Pedestrians must obey traffic control signals at intersections. When a "WALK" or green signal is displayed, pedestrians have the right-of-way. They must not enter the roadway when a "DON'T WALK" or red signal is displayed.
- Right-of-Way on Sidewalks (Section 316.130, Florida Statutes): If there is no sidewalk, pedestrians should walk on the left side of the road, facing oncoming traffic. When using a sidewalk, pedestrians have the right-of-way over vehicles when crossing a driveway, alley, or road within or at an intersection.
- Prohibited Areas (Section 316.130, Florida Statutes): Pedestrians are generally not allowed to walk or stand on limited-access highways or interstate highways. Pedestrians must use overpasses or underpasses when provided to safely cross a limited-access highway.
- Obeying Traffic Laws (Section 316.130, Florida Statutes): Pedestrians must obey all traffic control devices and traffic laws, including pedestrian signals and traffic signs.
- Special Considerations for Blind or Visually Impaired Pedestrians (Section 316.130, Florida Statutes): Drivers must yield the right-of-way to blind or visually impaired pedestrians using a white cane or guide dog. It is illegal to interfere with or harass individuals with guide dogs or white canes.
- Jaywalking (Section 316.130, Florida Statutes): Pedestrians should use designated crosswalks and follow traffic signals at intersections. Jaywalking, or crossing mid-block without yielding to traffic, is discouraged and can be dangerous.
- Shared-Use Paths and Bike Lanes: Pedestrians can use shared-use paths and bike lanes, but they should stay on the right side of the path or lane to allow for the safe passage of bicycles.
Florida follows a comparative negligence system in personal injury cases, including those involving pedestrian accidents. Comparative negligence is a legal doctrine that determines the degree of fault and liability of each party involved in an accident, including pedestrians and drivers. Under Florida's comparative negligence laws, if a pedestrian is partially at fault for their injuries in an accident, their ability to recover damages can be affected.
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