Some of the most dangerous accidents that happen on the road are those that involve pedestrians. Pedestrians are not afforded the same outside protection as vehicles which often results in devastating injuries. Unfortunately, one of the most common causes of crosswalk accidents is negligence. The District of Columbia implements traffic laws to protect pedestrians and motorists from serious accidents and injuries. When a motorist violates traffic laws such as driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, speeding, or running a red light, they are not only putting pedestrians’ lives at risk but their own as well. The law requires motorists to yield the right of way to pedestrians while they are crossing the street within the marked lines of a crosswalk. Please continue reading to learn who can be held liable for a crosswalk accident and how our determined Washington D.C. Pedestrian Accident Lawyers can help you today.
Who is liable for a crosswalk accident in D.C.?
When a crosswalk accident occurs, it is natural to wonder whether the motorist or pedestrian is at fault. Generally, determining who was at fault ultimately depends on whether the pedestrian was in a crosswalk at the time of the accident. As mentioned above, under the law motorists are required to yield the right of way to pedestrians in a crosswalk. Pedestrians have the right to assume that motorists will abide by the rules of the road and yield the right of way. Motorists are expected to exercise reasonable care to keep everyone on the road including themselves safe from harm. Unfortunately, motorists don’t always obey traffic laws which result in serious accidents and injuries. So with that being said, if a motorist strikes a pedestrian while they are in a crosswalk, the motorist is at fault. Motorists can be held liable for any damages that occur as a result of their negligent actions.
Could the pedestrian be found at fault?
Nevertheless, determining liability is complicated in these types of accidents as pedestrians may be found partially at fault. Like motorists, pedestrians must comply with certain laws to prevent accidents and injuries. Pedestrians are responsible for obeying pedestrian signals and using a crosswalk to cross the street safely. If a pedestrian fails to do so, they may be held liable for any damages that occur as a result of their negligence. Moreover, in some cases, a third party such as a government entity may be liable if they neglect to maintain safe road conditions for pedestrians and motorists.
In the unfortunate event that you or a loved one has been injured in a crosswalk accident, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our compassionate and determined team members. You have three years from the date of the accident to file a claim against a negligent party. Allow our firm to assist you through this complex legal process. We can help you file a claim within the right timeframe to ensure you have a chance to seek reasonable compensation for your damages.