Aug 11

The Chance of Getting Hit by a Car is Increasing – Who Pays Medical Bills?

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Getting Hit By a CarGetting hit by a car while walking has become a greater risk. A recent report shows an estimated 2,125 pedestrians were killed in the first half of 2014 with deaths from pedestrians getting by a car being up 15% since 2009. With school starting soon and more walkers on the road, it is important that everyone takes steps to avoid a pedestrian getting by a car.

According to ConsumerAffairs.com and the report, one cause of being hit by a car is distractions. The report found a significant increase in pedestrian accidents caused by distracted walking – with the victim talking or texting on a cellphone or listening to music on headphones. It is estimated that as many as two million pedestrian injuries were related to cell phone use in 2010. The report found teenagers were particularly likely to be distracted by their cellphone while walking. It cites research in which 1 in 5 high school students and 1 in 8 middle schoolers have been observed crossing the street while texting, wearing headphones, or talking on a cell phone. If a pedestrian wants to avoid being hit by a car, it is important that they eliminate their distractions.

If a pedestrian is hit by a car, who pays their medical expenses? In Florida, the No-Fault Statute comes into play. If the person who is hit by a car owns a vehicle, their automobile insurance carrier is responsible for providing Personal Injury Protection coverage. If the pedestrian does not own a vehicle, but lives with a relative who owns a vehicle, the relative’s car insurance would be responsible to provide Personal Injury Protection coverage. Lastly, if the person who is hit by a car does not own a vehicle or live with a relative who owns a vehicle, the vehicle who hit him or her would be responsible for providing Personal Injury Protection coverage.

Besides distraction, alcohol and speed are also major factors in pedestrians accidents. In 2013, a third of pedestrians 16 years of age and older who were killed after being hit by a car had legally drunk. Also, 15 percent of motorists who fatally struck pedestrians were also over the legal limit.

The report concludes that today’s drivers need to be better educated about the danger of pedestrian accidents and how to avoid them. I think pedestrians must also be better educated to avoid being hit by a car. Also, it is important to know who is responsible for payment of medical expenses and lost wages after someone is hit by a car.

Drive and walk safely and watch out for those who don’t.

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Pedestrian Accident Attorney Matthew E. NoyesPersonal Injury Attorney Matthew Noyes represents those injured in car accidents, motorcycle crashes, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents and other types of personal injury matters. His is a proud partner of  Perenich Caulfield Avril Noyes – one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Pinellas County. Call Attorney Matthew Noyes now at 727-796-8282 or fill out the form on this page or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.

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