While walking is an excellent way for people to get around while improving their health, it also poses many dangers, especially in South Florida. According to a recent report by a pedestrian-safety organization, Florida ranks as the most dangerous state in the nation for pedestrians. South Florida, in particular, ranks as the 13th most dangerous region. The agency uses its Pedestrian Death Index (PDI) to rank states and metro areas. The PDI utilizes risk by calculating the number of people hit and killed by motorists while walking. Even when pedestrian accidents don’t result in fatal injuries, pedestrians tend to face the most serious of injuries after an accident. The most severe injuries include brain trauma, spinal injuries, fractures, lacerations, paralysis, and loss of limbs.
During the last data collecting period, South Florida experienced 1,675 pedestrian deaths, about 2.8 deaths per 100,000 Florida residents. The report revealed that older adults, people of color, and those residing in lower-income neighborhoods had the highest risk of fatal pedestrian accidents. Black residents suffered fatal injuries at a rate over 80% more than White and non-Hispanic residents. Low-income individuals are more likely to suffer fatalities because their neighbors often lack sidewalks and marked crosswalks. Further, older adults may experience serious injuries and fatalities because they often face challenges in sight, hearing, and movement.
Pedestrian accidents in Florida tend to occur more frequently at night and in cities. For instance, recent Jacksonville news reports described a tragic pedestrian accident. The pedestrian was struck by a vehicle around 2:40 a.m. while she was walking northbound on 1-95. A pickup truck hit the woman, and she died at the scene of the accident.
There are many reasons that pedestrian accidents happen, and in some cases, both the pedestrian and driver may be responsible for the incident. Florida courts follow the pure comparative negligence theory of liability. Under these laws, the fact-finder would apportion liability based on each parties’ respective level of fault.
It is essential that pedestrians obey Florida pedestrian laws to protect against a serious accident. Pedestrians should be aware that they must obey traffic signals. This includes not leaving the curb until the traffic signal indicates that it is safe to do so. Further, pedestrians should keep to the right half of the crosswalk and cross the roadway at a right angle, not at an angle, as this makes it harder for motorists to see them.
Have You Suffered Injuries as a Florida Pedestrian?
If you or someone you love has suffered severe injuries in a Florida pedestrian accident, the attorneys at Friedman Rodman Frank & Estrada, P.A can help you recover compensation for your injuries. The lawyers at our firm have nearly 45 years of experience handling complex Florida injury cases on behalf of victims and their families. We represent clients in an array of matters stemming from areas such as Florida slip-and-falls, car accidents, boat accidents, premises liability, defective products, and medical malpractice. We use our extensive knowledge, training, and skills to ensure that our clients recover the damages they deserve. Contact our firm at 877-448-8585 to schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney.