As the weather becomes more pleasant, people start to make the choice to walk instead of drive whenever possible. Not only is walking excellent for your health, but it can be a soothing way to start or end the day. Unfortunately, not all drivers are as aware of pedestrians as they should be, making that morning or evening walk potentially dangerous.
Pedestrian accidents happen every day all across the country. In any given year, approximately 5,000 people are killed as a result of a pedestrian accident. Thousands more are injured by collisions with vehicles on the nation’s roadways. Although there is no sure fire way to prevent a pedestrian accident, there are some precautions you can take to decrease your chance of being involved in a pedestrian accident. In addition, if you are involved in a pedestrian accident, there are some steps you should take right after the accident to ensure that you receive compensation for your injuries from the responsible party.
Precautions to Take When Walking
Keep the following precautions and tips in mind when you do decide to take to the Yakima streets for a walk.
- Limit your walking to daylight hours whenever possible.
- Wear reflective tape on your jacket, shoes, backpack, or hat when you must walk during the dark hours. This is one of those “you can’t have too much” scenarios. Buy an entire roll of the tape and put it on everything you can think of–the more visible you are, the better.
- Stick to well-lit roadways.
- Walk only where there is a designated sidewalk or walking path.
- Walk with a friend if possible. It is harder to miss two people than one.
- Obey all traffic lights and rules of the road.
- Assume that vehicles will not obey traffic lights and rules of the road. Even if you legally have the right of way, don’t step out into the street until you are sure the vehicle is going to yield the right of way.
- Cross streets only at the corner or at a designated pedestrian crosswalk.
What to Do If You Are Involved in A Pedestrian Accident
All the precautions in the world may not be enough to prevent you from being the victim of a pedestrian accident. If the worst happens, and you find yourself involved in a collision, take the following steps to ensure that your rights are protected and the person who caused your injuries is held responsible.
- Get any identifying information possible at the scene of the accident. If you are not severely injured, get the driver’s name and driver’s license information. If the driver does not stop, get the make and model of the vehicle and the license plate number if possible.
- Ask anyone who saw the accident to provide their identifying information as well.
- Contact the police and make a report.
- Be sure to accept transport to the hospital. You have no way of knowing whether or not you suffered any serious injuries until you allow a physician to complete a thorough examination.
- Obtain a copy of the police report once you are feeling up to it.
- Follow-up on any recommended medical care.
- Contact a Yakima pedestrian accident attorney.
Injuries from a pedestrian accident can be quite severe in some cases. Make sure that you document all of your injuries with photos and written reports from the hospital.
The attorneys at Mariano Morales Law have been helping victims of Yakima pedestrian accidents for over three decades. Contact our legal team today by calling (509) 853-2222 for your free initial consultation.