Pedestrian safety is a priority of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation because of the increasing numbers of pedestrian injuries and deaths from drivers on the road. In 2014, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation reported that there were 3,985 pedestrian injuries and 166 deaths – a staggering amount of injuries for just one year.
Since pedestrians are so vulnerable to injuries from car accidents, Pennsylvania has put out a strict set of regulations to help prevent these injuries. Pennsylvania’s pedestrian safety laws are very straightforward and include the following driver obligations:
- A driver who is emerging from or entering a road, building, or driveway shall yield to any pedestrians approaching on any sidewalk. Failure to obey this law, results in a three point penalty.
- Whenever a vehicle is stopped at any crosswalk at an intersection or at any marked crosswalk to permit a pedestrian to cross the roadway, the driver of any other vehicle approaching from the rear shall not overtake and pass the stopped vehicle.
- If no sidewalk or shoulder is present along the road, a person is allowed to walk in the road, as close to the edge as possible and must walk on the left side of the road facing traffic.
- Is a pedestrian is using a white cane or service animal, vehicles must yield and stop if necessary. The penalty for failing to obey this regulation is three points.
- Drivers must pass pedestrians at a careful speed and leave at least four feet between the pedestrian and the vehicle.
If you are involved in an accident as a pedestrian, it is important to get to make sure that you get off the road and into a safe place and that you seek medical attention immediately. Contact the police, your doctors, and the driver’s auto insurance after seeking medical treatment. Exchange only your name and phone number with the driver, but avoid speaking to the driver’s attorney.
Who Will Pay for My Injuries?
When you are hit by a driver, the answers to many of your questions regarding who is responsible for the accident comes down to who was at fault. Fault is determined by who is considered negligent in the accident. In Pennsylvania, the comparative negligence rule applies to these types of situations to determine fault. Comparative negligence is a rule that allocates fault to both parties when they are at least somewhat at fault. Each party is responsible for paying their share of the other party’s damages.
For example, if you are hit by a driver because you darted out into the road, you may be found to be 30 percent at fault and the driver would be 70 percent at fault. Based on this, you would pay 30 percent of the driver’s damages, and the driver would pay 70 percent of your damages.
Contact an Attorney After a Car Accident
A knowledgeable attorney can work with the insurance companies to help you get the compensation you may be entitled to. If you have been injured as a pedestrian, it is important to contact a Philadelphia car accident attorney immediately to assess your case and help you get the results you are entitled to.