According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, 137,000 pedestrians were injured and treated in the emergency room following traffic crashes in 2017. Pedestrian accidents can also be fatal. The CDC states that nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed in traffic accidents in 2017.
Pedestrian accidents are caused by a number of factors, but most accidents are caused by negligence of the driver and/or the pedestrian.
Alcohol impairment factor in almost 50 percent of pedestrian crashes
Alcohol impairment is a form of negligence that can cause a pedestrian accident. The CDC reports that 47 percent of fatal pedestrian accidents involve alcohol impairment, with 17 percent of them involving a driver with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher. However, drivers are not the only parties that are impaired. According to the CDC, 33 percent of pedestrian accidents involve a pedestrian with a blood alcohol concentration of at least .08. Many fatal accidents involve both an impaired driver and impaired pedestrian.
Recovering damages after a pedestrian accident
Pedestrians can recover damages after an accident to cover their medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering by filing a personal injury claim against the parties at-fault for the accident. Generally, the driver of the vehicle that struck you will be named as a defendant, but you may also name other defendants, including the owner of the vehicle and the driver’s employer (if they were driving within the scope of their employment).
Pedestrians will have to establish that the alcohol impairment of the driver and other negligent behaviors (e.g. speeding, failing to stop at a stop sign) were a breach of duty that caused the accident and their injuries. However, in Maryland, a pure contributory negligence state, pedestrians that acted negligently (e.g. walking while impaired by alcohol, failing to cross in the crosswalk) may not recover damages for their injuries.
If you are unsure on whether you are entitled to compensation after a bicycle and pedestrian accident, a Maryland personal injury attorney can review your case and provide further assistance.