What are the Main Causes of Pedestrian Accidents?
Personal Injury - August 25, 2021
Pedestrian accidents often result in devastating injuries because of the size and weight difference between vehicles and the human body. Unfortunately, these accidents are not uncommon throughout the state of Illinois. Here, we want to examine some of the main causes of pedestrian accidents in this state. When you are armed with this knowledge, you can help take the steps necessary to prevent pedestrian accidents from occurring and causing severe injuries. If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a pedestrian crash, you need to seek assistance from a skilled attorney as soon as possible.
How Often Do Illinois Pedestrian Crashes Occur?
When we examine data available from the Illinois Department of Transportation, we can see that there were 4,796 total pedestrian crashes reported to the state during the latest year. Out of these incidents, there were:
- 173 fatal crashes
- 4,508 injury crashes
- 1,008 serious injury crashes
- 115 property damage crashes
When we look at this data, we can see that nearly every pedestrian crash that gets reported to state officials resulted in some sort of injury or fatality for the pedestrian. It is crucial that we understand the cause of these crashes so that we can begin to reduce how often they occur in Illinois.
Driver Causes of Illinois Pedestrian Crashes
We regularly find that liability for these incidents falls to the drivers on the roadway. Unfortunately, drivers tend not to pay attention to the surroundings, particularly when it comes to pedestrians on or around the roadway. Some of the most common causes of Illinois pedestrian crashes include:
- Distracted driving. When drivers take their attention off the road, whether to look at their phones, eat, or reach for something in the vehicle, this can lead to devastating consequences for pedestrians nearby.
- Speeding. Pedestrians are much more likely to sustain severe injuries when they are struck by a vehicle traveling faster than the speed limit.
- Impaired driving. Drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs will not be able to react to pedestrians on or around the roadway. Driving becomes erratic, and reaction times slow.
- Failing to yield. Drivers are required to yield the right of way to pedestrians in many situations, including at crosswalks, intersections, parking lots, and other areas. When drivers fail to yield appropriately, severe pedestrian accidents can occur.
- Back-up incidents. Anytime a driver is backing up, they must be cautious of any vehicles or pedestrians in their pathway. Pedestrians are most at risk when drivers are pulling out of parking spaces or out of driveways.
Pedestrians Can Cause Accidents as Well
Pedestrian carelessness or negligence can also contribute to these incidents. As we become more and more attached to our phones and other types of handheld devices, it is not uncommon to see pedestrians walking on or around the roadway completely distracted. When a person is sending or receiving a message, browsing social media, or taking pictures, they may not see approaching vehicles.
It is also not uncommon for pedestrians to walk or jog with earbuds in so they can listen to music or podcasts. When a pedestrian can no longer hear what is going on around them, they may not know when a vehicle is approaching.
Aside from distractions, pedestrians who are impaired by alcohol or drugs are also more likely to be involved in a severe accident.
Any pedestrian injured in an accident involving a vehicle needs to work with a skilled Chicago personal injury attorney as soon as possible. A lawyer can fully investigate the incident and help establish liability. They will be able to negotiate with the insurance carriers involved and help secure maximum compensation for the pedestrian’s losses.