Walking has many benefits. It can save you gas money and improve your physical health. Houston’s year-round warmer weather means walking is always an easy, affordable option compared with driving.
However, pedestrian accidents remain a major problem in Houston and throughout the country. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that approximately 55,000 pedestrians were injured and over 6,000 were killed in 2020.
Causes of pedestrian accidents
There are many reasons for pedestrian accidents. Drivers can be distracted, speeding or driving under the influence. Some drivers may not know the laws surrounding pedestrian traffic and believe they have the right of way, which, in turn, causes an accident.
As a pedestrian, you should know and follow the laws. Do not jaywalk. Even when you are legally crossing a street, look left and right for vehicles.
Be especially careful when you walk past driveways or alleys. Many drivers exit their driveways without bothering to look for pedestrians, particularly if pedestrians are uncommon in the area.
Try to walk on sidewalks whenever possible. Walk facing traffic if there are no sidewalks. Do not use headphones, or if you do, keep the volume low so you can hear traffic.
The aftermath of a pedestrian accident
Even if you are the most careful pedestrian, you cannot control the vehicles around you. Pedestrians hit by cars often suffer serious injuries. Some may even be permanent.
Your injuries are just one of many challenges you face as the victim of a pedestrian accident. Healing and recovery take time, causing you to potentially miss work, while you watch your medical bills pile up.
You may also experience significant mental and emotional trauma. Your daily life is not the same and you could even be afraid to walk outside again.
A pedestrian accident usually involves negligence, and often it is the driver’s negligence. You can potentially receive compensation after a pedestrian accident if you can prove negligence. This can be difficult, so it is best to have professional assistance.