A pedestrian is any person traveling the roadways by foot and not in a vehicle (automobile, bicycle, golf cart, tractor). Unfortunately, pedestrians are often at risk for severe injuries or death when on the road alongside motor vehicles. Most collisions occur when people cross the street. Pedestrians often try to cross a major highway, which is Highway 90, Highway 57, Highway 63 or many other highways and major roadways here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. But pedestrians can be killed or severely injured by being in or near roadways. Generally, cars traveling along major roadways do not expect pedestrians to be trying to cross the street, as well.
What makes pedestrian accidents so different from auto accidents involving multiple vehicles is that pedestrians are not protected in any way from vehicles, so the likelihood of death or serious injury is high. Due to the many unique aspects of a George County pedestrian accident case, it is best to seek help from a local attorney following a collision. An experienced pedestrian accident attorney can collect all relevant evidence and help you seek the compensation you need.
The State of Mississippi does not have as strict guidelines and regulations that people are required to abide by as pedestrians like many urban areas do. Pedestrians need to use sidewalks when available, walk along the side of the street when sidewalks are not available, and watch out for vehicles. Since most of Mississippi is very rural, crosswalks are not always available. In more urban areas, vehicles need to be on the watch for any persons crossing the streets, especially near schools, hospitals, and other areas where people commonly cross streets. Additionally, all vehicles, including bicycles, are supposed to yield to pedestrians.
There are some differences between pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents. Bicycles are considered vehicles in the State of Mississippi and may use the roadway just like any other motor vehicle, but also they have to signal, stop, and obey traffic signals. Pedestrians are usually not using the roadways in the same manner that bicycles use the roadway. They are walking on the sidewalk, crossing the street, or using other paths rather than what the main traffic would be using.
In few circumstances, bicycles might be considered pedestrians in the case of an accident. This is rare, but children are allowed to use sidewalks and crosswalks with bicycles, whereas most other users of bicycles need to use the main roadways. In those types of situations, there may be a question about whether the person was a pedestrian or operating a bicycle. Other times, when people get off the bike and are just walking along the sidewalk or trying to cross a certain roadway, they might be considered a pedestrian, as well.
One of the unique aspects of a George County pedestrian accident case is how liability is determined. Lawyers are usually looking at the case purely from a liability standpoint. If the pedestrian was crossing the street in a proper area at the proper time and would have been visible to a vehicle, liability will be established against the vehicle operator. Many times pedestrian accidents happen in places where crossing the street might be questionable.
Lawyers have to look at when the person crossed the street, what time of day it is, what kind of clothing they were wearing, whether the vehicle was trying to avoid the accident in any respect, and whether they were speeding, texting, or talking on the phone. There are a number of factors that go into whether or not the liability could be established.
There are many unique aspects of a George County pedestrian accident case such as how liability is determined, the type of recoverable damages, and the type of evidence needed to prove a case. Following a collision with a motor vehicle, you should discuss your case with a skilled pedestrian accident attorney in your community. Call today to get started on your case.