Car accidents are not just a danger to those who drive or ride in vehicles. Even those strolling down the street can be at risk of injury and death from a motor vehicle. In most cases, the pedestrian that is injured is at the mercy of those behind the wheel and have no fault in the accident. With no protection, the injuries can be extremely serious and have long-term consequences for these unsuspecting bystanders.
Frequency Of Pedestrian Injuries In Car Accidents
Each year thousands of people are injured and fatally wounded in car accidents. According to the Fatality Analysis Reporting System or FARS and the National Automotive Sampling System (NASS) there were 4,432 fatalities and another estimated 69,000 injuries to pedestrians in 2011 due to motor vehicle accidents. This breaks down to a pedestrian being injured at the rate of every eight minutes by a motor vehicle in the U.S.
Causes of these deadly accidents are often due to distraction on the part of drivers. Although all drivers are instructed to yield to pedestrians whenever possible, distractions such as cell phones, other vehicles and even passengers in the cars can take driver’s focus away from those crossing streets or entrances to driveways. Whatever the cause or reason, the pedestrians injured or killed in these tragic accidents had little defense against thousands of pounds of steel and fiberglass.
Busy Chicago Streets Are Danger Zones For Pedestrians
Although Chicago has vowed to become a safer city for pedestrians, there are still many accidents that happen upon our streets. A study conducted by the City of Chicago looked at the rate of pedestrian accidents over a five-year period, from 2005-2009. Some of the data accumulated included:
- Well over 3,000 pedestrian accidents every year on the streets of Chicago
- Serious injury accidents ranged from 458 up to 630 over the 5-year study
- Between 34-65 pedestrians lost their lives each year
- Hit and run accidents were common. 40% of fatalities were hit and run accidents
- 78-80% of all serious and fatality crashes happened within 125 feet of the midpoint of an intersection
- Correlation Between Speed And Pedestrian Accidents
One factor that can change a serious accident into a fatal pedestrian accident is speed. The rate of speed at which a pedestrian is hit has an extreme impact on the chance of survival. A seemingly small increase of 10 MPH can change the chance of survival from 45% to 85%. For example, a pedestrian hit by a car going 40 MPH has an 85% of being fatally injured while at 30 MPH, that rate drops to 45%. A large difference in the consequences, depending on how fast a vehicle is going, making a good case for abiding by speed limits.
Protecting The Legal Rights Of Chicago Pedestrians In Car Accidents
A pedestrian accident can be very serious and can be any member of your family, including a child. The injuries are often severe and require both time and money to treat and heal, as best they can. These accidents can be difficult to handle for many families and we understand the pain and hardship that you are enduring. Chicago Car Accident Lawyers want to offer our help in pursuing justice for your case, to ensure that at the very least, that you are fairly compensated for the pain, suffering and injuries a pedestrian accident causes. Please call us to meet for a free consultation to discuss your options in your case.
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