Some of the most devastating injuries are suffered by pedestrians hit by a car or truck. The simple fact is that a motor vehicle is a deadly instrument. The average car weighs more than 3,000 pounds, and tractor-trailers can weigh more than 30,000 pounds. When that much force hits a human being, the consequences are often disastrous.
According to the United States Centers for Disease Control, more than 4,000 pedestrians die each year. Another 69,000 people are injured as pedestrians - roughly one pedestrian is hurt every eight minutes. Children are the most vulnerable, with children under five years of age making up about 40% of pedestrian deaths.
Distracted driving is often to blame for pedestrian injuries. Many pedestrian injuries occur when the driver is not paying attention to the road ahead and hits a person crossing the street. Drivers must watch out for pedestrians at all times, not just when entering an intersection. In fact, 79% of pedestrian deaths in 2002 occurred at places other than intersections.
The danger to pedestrians is, of course, heightened as the sun goes down. Roughly 40% of pedestrian deaths occur at dusk, between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Once night falls, drivers have less visibility of the road ahead of them. It is the driver’s responsibility to slow down to make sure they can stop in time if their headlights do illuminate a person up ahead. Unfortunately, not all drivers do so, and even some of those drivers who do slow down at night nonetheless do not pay enough attention to the road ahead.
Tennessee law sets out to protect pedestrians from careless, distracted, and drunk drivers. The first rule for all drivers is to do what is reasonably safe under the circumstances, keeping a lookout for people walking on or around the roadway. Under Tennessee Code Annotated sec. 55-8-134, a driver must yield the right of way to any pedestrian in a crosswalk or in a school zone and must remain stopped until pedestrians make it completely off the road. Even if a pedestrian is illegally jaywalking across the street, drivers must do their best to avoid hitting the pedestrian. Tennessee Code Annotated sec. 55-8-136 says that a driver must always use due care to avoid striking a person crossing the street regardless of who has the right of way, and the driver should sound his or her car horn if necessary. Perhaps most importantly, Tennessee law says that a driver must especially use caution when children are nearby. Tennessee Code Annotated sec. 55-8-136(a).
If you or someone you care about has been injured as a pedestrian, contact one of our experienced attorneys online or call us anytime at 615-742-4880 or toll-free at 866-812-8787. Our talented team knows how to develop the evidence and to hold accountable those who have caused harm to you and your family. We have recovered more than $100 million dollars for our satisfied clients and we would like to help you too. As always, we only get paid if we win and we advance all case expenses. So you have nothing to lose except the compensation you deserve.
- Rear-End Accidents
- Head-On Collisions
- Sideswipe Accidents
- Pedestrian Injuries
- Passenger Injuries
- Broadside (or T-Bone) Collisions
- Distracted Drivers
- Hit and Run Accidents
- Drunk Drivers and Intoxicated Drivers
- Wrong Way Accidents
- Seat Belt Use and Auto Accidents
- Car Accidents in Construction Zones
- Car Accident with Uninsured or Underinsured Driver
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