Florida is the most dangerous state in the country when it comes to being a pedestrian. In fact, of the top ten most dangerous cities for pedestrians in the nation, eight are located in Florida. Statewide, 9,736 pedestrian crashes occurred in the state in 2019, up by four percent from the previous year. These accidents caused 7,893 injuries and 734 deaths. Broward County accounted for over ten percent of these statistics, with 1,083 pedestrian accidents causing 922 injuries and 66 fatalities.
Pedestrian accidents, including hit-and-run accidents, are on the rise in Florida and Broward County. Injured pedestrians often incur some of the most serious injuries, including fatal accidents at a high rate. For the most severe or catastrophic injuries in Fort Lauderdale, pedestrian accident victims call Rosen Injury Law, P.A. to help them hold the negligent driver accountable for their injuries. Our Fort Lauderdale pedestrian accident lawyers provide clients with a Board-certified specialist in civil trial law and five-star customer service to help them get care and comfort and substantial results.
The Most Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in Fort Lauderdale
The number one place where most pedestrian accidents occur is while pedestrians are crossing the street in a marked crosswalk. Vehicle collisions with pedestrians walking in the road or crossing in the middle of the street happen less often. Whether turning left or right at an intersection, drivers fail to watch out for pedestrians before making their turn. Drivers might also run a red light or enter the intersection before their light has turned green, while a pedestrian is already in their path in the crosswalk.
Pedestrians have the right-of-way when they are in a marked crosswalk, and drivers have a duty to stop and stay stopped until the pedestrian is safely across. If the pedestrian is coming from the right side of the street, the driver must stop and stay stopped until the pedestrian has crossed over to the left side of the roadway. If the pedestrian is approaching from the left side, the driver may not enter the intersection if the pedestrian is already on the right-half of the roadway or about to step into it.
If the intersection does not have a marked crosswalk or if the pedestrian is crossing in the middle of the street, vehicles have the right-of-way, and pedestrians should wait to cross until they can safely do so.
Pedestrians are also required by Florida law to use sidewalks whenever present. They should not walk in the road unless they need to step off the sidewalk to get around an obstruction that would prevent them from using the sidewalk safely. Where there is no sidewalk available, pedestrians are expected to walk on the road’s left shoulder, against the flow of traffic.
How Do Pedestrian Accident Claims Work?
Injured pedestrians can first look to their Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage, assuming they have an automobile in the household with PIP insurance. This no-fault insurance covers pedestrians injured in a motor vehicle accident. If the pedestrian does not have access to PIP coverage, they should look to the policy of the driver involved in the crash.
PIP benefits are no-fault and basically guaranteed after an accident, but they only cover 80% of medical expenses and 60% of lost wages up to $10,000. Pedestrian injuries are often quite extensive and expensive to treat. If the injury qualifies as a “serious” injury under Florida law, the victim can sue the negligent driver and recover the full amount of medical bills and lost wages, plus money damages for pain and suffering.
A “serious” injury that takes the victim outside of the no-fault system includes the following:
- A significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
- A permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability
A negligence claim is very different from a no-fault claim. Here, the victim has to prove that the driver was at fault in causing the accident and that the victim was not to blame. If both parties are partially at fault, any negligence attached to the pedestrian would lower the amount of damages the victim could recover. At Rosen Injury Law, P.A., we are experts in proving cases of negligence and obtaining sizeable settlements and verdicts for our clients. We know how to investigate an accident and prove the driver was at fault. We also know all the insurance company tricks, like blaming the pedestrian for being careless or distracted, or disputing how serious the victim’s injuries are. We’ve won significant jury trial verdicts for our clients who suffered severe injuries at the hands of a negligent driver.
Help With Pedestrian Accidents in Fort Lauderdale
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a Fort Lauderdale pedestrian accident, call Rosen Injury Law, P.A. at 954-787-1500 for a free consultation and immediate assistance getting the medical care and compensation you need.