Pedestrian Accidents Resulting in Wrongful Death: What Happens Next?

Posted By Mary Alexander
Pedestrian Accidents Resulting in Wrongful Death: What Happens Next?

People deserve to be able to walk safely down all public walkways and sidewalks. Regrettably, fatal traffic accidents involving pedestrians occur every single day. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration pedestrian injuries in a traffic accident occur every 7.5 minutes. The California Office of Traffic Safety reports that in 2018, there were 893 pedestrian fatalities across the State of California. 

If you have lost a loved one as a result of a fatal pedestrian accident, legal recourse may be available through a wrongful death claim against the at-fault driver. In a successful case, financial compensation can be obtained for losses including medical expenses, funeral costs, and loss of relationship. 

What You Should Know About Fatal Pedestrian Accidents

The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration reports that the following issues typically lead to pedestrian fatalities:

Poor Compliance with Traffic Laws - Pedestrians are generally safer when all those on the road are complying with traffic laws. Common examples of noncompliance can include drivers who fail to yield the right of way for pedestrians, run red lights, or drive while distracted. 

Inadequate Separation between Motorists and Pedestrians - Pedestrians are typically safer when separated from moving vehicles. When a roadway is inadequately constructed or there is insufficient lighting, pedestrians are placed at risk of being hit by a driver. The agency further reports that in 2016, 75 percent of pedestrians who were fatally injured were struck by drivers when there was low visibility. 

Driving While Under the Influence - According to a traffic safety report published by the California Department of Public Health, between 2007 and 2013, 35 percent of pedestrian fatalities involved alcohol consumption on behalf of either pedestrian or driver involved. 

Determining Fault in a Pedestrian Accident

A successful wrongful death claim generally involves proving recklessness, intentional wrongdoing, or negligence on behalf of the driver. If the driver of the fatal accident was found to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the driver will likely be presumed responsible for causing the accident that led to the fatal injuries. All drivers in the state have a legal obligation to drive safely to prevent the injury of another person. If the driver was driving recklessly, he can be considered negligent and could be held responsible for the losses caused by the accident. 

Under state law, proving a case requires that the plaintiff demonstrate the negligence committed by the driver. The following are critical elements of a wrongful death case:

  1. The motorist owed the pedestrian a duty of care;
  2. The motorist failed to uphold their duty;
  3. The motorist’s actions led to the accident that resulted in the pedestrian’s death; and
  4. The victim’s survivors sustained provable damages. 

Following the Passing of a Loved One in a Pedestrian Accident, Obtain the Support of a Knowledgeable Personal Injury Attorney

Losing a loved one in a fatal accident is tragic. While nothing can bring back a loved one, filing a wrongful death lawsuit can help bring justice to the victims. If your family member was fatally wounded due to careless driving of another, discuss your case with a qualified wrongful death attorney today. A proficient attorney will help you recover the damages you are owed. 

The personal injury attorneys at Mary Alexander & Associates, P.C. are highly skilled in pedestrian accidents that result in wrongful death cases. The compassionate team understands the difficulties these tragic accidents can bring to those who have unexpectedly lost a loved one. Consequently, the firm is dedicated in helping grieving family members in taking the right legal steps that will help bring them justice. Consider contacting the firm today for a free case evaluation

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About the Author:

Mary Alexander


Attorney Mary Alexander focuses exclusively on serious personal injury claims. Our firm's past successes include a $45 million judgement for a spinal cord injury victim, a $25 million settlement in a wrongful death claim, and a $1.15 billion judgment for premises liability and consumer fraud related to lead paint. With more than 30 years of experience, our catastrophic personal injury lawyers have the knowledge and skill necessary to litigate claims involving life-changing injuries, including brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and severe burns, which may cause permanent disability, paralysis or wrongful death. We handle injury claims throughout the Bay Area such as: motor vehicle accidents, train accidents, construction accidents, premises liability, product liability, nursing home abuse, maritime injuries, medical malpractice and more. Call our San Francisco law office today to schedule a free consultation.... View full business profile here: Mary Alexander