Distracted driving is one of the primary causes of these accidents. Distracted driving occurs when a driver’s attention is diverted from the road. Drivers typically become distracted by texting or otherwise using a cell phone; personal hygiene; eating; or adjusting entertainment or air conditioning systems. When a driver becomes distracted in this manner, the driver fails to notice a pedestrian, resulting in a serious collision.
Pedestrians are frequently struck by vehicles in crosswalks. Regarding traffic light collisions, California allows vehicles to turn on red lights unless there is a sign indicating otherwise. However, many drivers fail to look both ways prior to turning. This failure often results in drivers not observing pedestrians, causing an accident. These accidents are similarly caused when drivers’ fail to stop at a stop sign.
Speeding is another common cause for these accidents. Speeding substantially decreases the brake time to avoid collision with another pedestrian. Therefore, drivers that are speeding increase the risk of harm to pedestrians. Due to the high impact nature of this collision, victims often suffer significant and life-altering injuries.
Driving under the influence of alcohol or drug poses a substantial risk of harm to pedestrians. In fact, almost half of pedestrian-vehicle fatalities involve alcohol or drug impairment. Intoxicated driving causes reduced awareness of the surrounding and reduced reaction time. These impairments cause drivers to collide with pedestrians.
Most accidents occur between dusk and dawn. During this period of time, weather conditions, such as rain, smog, snow, and fog, and rain reduce visibility for drivers. As a result, drivers experience greater difficulty in seeing pedestrians, especially children.
Pedestrians’ negligence often cause or contribute to their accident and injuries. Crosswalks are a marked part of the road where pedestrians have the right to cross the road. Crosswalks also signal to drivers to exercise caution because pedestrians may be present. Walk signals inform pedestrians when it is appropriate to cross the road. Crosswalks and walk signals serve to decrease the risk of a pedestrian-vehicle accident. However, pedestrians often fail to use a crosswalk when crossing the road, or walk without having the proper walk signal. If these failures caused the accident, the pedestrian may be partially or completely at-fault.