Pedestrian Accident Attorneys in Lexington
Unlike occupants of motor vehicles, pedestrians who are out for a walk in Lexington and other South Carolina communities do not have a steel cage to protect them. So, when they are struck by a vehicle, there is a very good chance that they will and up hitting the pavement, which can result in serious and catastrophic injuries. Injuries like these can keep a person out of work for an extended period of time and in the worst cases, they can end up being debilitating or even fatal.
When someone is injured in a pedestrian accident in Lexington or someplace nearby, they have a right to be fully compensated. But insurance companies usually do not see things the same way. Their goal is to minimize the amount of damages they have to pay out for injury claims, so no matter how friendly and courteous they may seem, the interests of insurance company representatives are not aligned with that of injury victims. For this reason, it is very important for victims to have an experienced legal advocate in their corner working hard to secure the full and fair compensation they deserve.
At Peake & Fowler, we have over six decades of combined experience representing clients who have been injured in pedestrian accidents in Lexington, and those who have suffered all other types of personal injuries in South Carolina. Our attorneys have in-depth knowledge of this area of the law, and we have a successful track record with even the most complex cases. We work closely with our clients, putting our in-depth experience to work to provide the strong personalized representation they need and deserve.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics
As we touched on earlier, pedestrian crashes have been on the rise in recent years. In fact, during a recent 10-year period, the percentage of pedestrian accident fatalities increased by a staggering 53%. During that same period, all other traffic-related fatalities increased by only 2%. The number of pedestrian crash fatalities now routinely tops 6,000 year, and they account for 17% of all traffic-related deaths.
What is Causing the Increase in Pedestrian Accidents?
Pedestrian deaths are rising at an alarming rate, and there are a number of reasons why experts believe that this is happening:
- Population Growth: The population of Lexington and other South Carolina cities continues to grow, which naturally means that there will be more pedestrians out walking. However, South Carolina’s average annual population growth rate has only been between 1% and 2% for the last several decades, so population increase alone cannot account for very much of the sharp increase in pedestrian deaths.
- More Health and Environmentally Conscious Society: Beyond population growth, more people are out walking because it is a good way to get exercise in, and more people are conscious of the need to protect our environment. Walking and biking are especially popular in South Carolina because we have comfortable weather year-round.
- Larger Vehicles on the Road: An NPR report noted that sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and large trucks have become increasingly popular in recent years. This has been driven largely by lower fuel prices combined with higher incomes brought about by a stronger economy. Larger vehicles are wider and have higher ground clearance, making it more difficult to notice pedestrians and smaller objects, especially after dark. In addition, when a pedestrian is struck by a vehicle of this size, the chances of serious and fatal injuries increase dramatically.
- Distractions: The NPR report also talks about the obvious problem that so much of the public is addicted to their smartphones these days. Texting while driving and similar activities are extremely dangerous, because they distract drivers in three ways; visually, manually, and cognitively. This makes it very easy to miss important things that are happening, such as a pedestrian crossing the road in front of them. Pedestrians are not immune to the temptation to use their smartphones either. And this can be a problem especially when they are looking down at their phones as they approach road crossings.
Pursuing a Pedestrian Accident Claim in Lexington, SC
When someone gets injured in a pedestrian crash, they are entitled to damages not only for direct monetary losses such as lost wages, lost earning capacity, and medical expenses, but also for noneconomic losses such as physical and emotional pain and suffering and diminished quality of life. In the case of a wrongful death, loved ones may also be entitled to damages for things like loss of consortium and loss of comfort, care, guidance, and support.
In some pedestrian accident cases, both the driver and the pedestrian could be partially at fault. If this is the case, an injured person may still be able to recover damages under South Carolina’s modified comparative negligence standard as long as they are less than 50% at fault for the underlying accident. However, their damage award would be reduced in proportion to the percentage of fault they share.
For example, let’s say a driver was exceeding the speed limit and thought the pedestrian saw them approaching, but the pedestrian was looking down at his phone while crossing the road. The pedestrian should have looked up to see the vehicle coming, but the driver was breaking the law by going over the speed limit. In a case like this, it might be determined that the driver was 75% at fault and the pedestrian was 25% at fault. So, if the pedestrian is hurt in the crash, his damage award would be reduced by 25%.
Contact our Knowledgeable and Compassionate Lexington, SC Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
If you or someone close to you was injured in a pedestrian accident in South Carolina, the attorneys at Peake & Fowler are ready to go to work for you. We will provide a free consultation to fully assess your case and advise you of your legal rights and options, and if we end up taking your case, you will not have to pay any attorney fees unless we successfully recover compensation on your behalf.
For your complimentary consultation, message us online or call our office today at 803-998-2412. We look forward to serving you!
Peake & Fowler Law Firm, P.A., is located in Columbia, SC and serves clients in and around Newberry, Lexington, Sumter, Allendale, Orangeburg, St. Matthews, Bishopville, Florence, Blythewood, State Park, Eastover, Columbia, Elgin, Irmo, Hopkins, Ridgeway, Lugoff, Ballentine, West Columbia, Kershaw, Camden, Dusty Bend, and Richland County, Lexington County, Calhoun County, Orangeburg County, Sumter County, Kershaw County, Newberry County, Fairfield County, Lee County, Clarendon County and Florence County.