California Vehicle Code 21950(a) requires that drivers exercise ALL DUE CARE to pedestrians walking in designated crosswalks and at unmarked walkways within intersections. That means that all drivers owe a duty to pedestrians, whether or not they are in the crosswalk, to exercise all safeguards, reduce driving speed, and yield right of way. Despite this, California has consistently ranked as the state with the highest number of traffic fatalities related to pedestrians on or near roadways.
What is the problem with California drivers and our highways? Well, California maintains the highest population of any state in the country, has three of the top ten largest cities (by population) in the country, and Los Angeles, California, is the largest county in the country (with a population of 10.17 million as of 2015). Our population size means that there are a lot of commuters on our roads every day, and with all those commuters comes traffic, and lots of it. Every resident of Los Angeles knows the pains of traffic and vehicle gridlock – and if you have forgotten about it at its worst, just picture the 405 freeway at rush hour! Mixed with all those cars in the street are thousands of pedestrians walking around to get to work, the store, the metro station or walking just for pleasure/exercise. Add in distractions of cell phones (texting, checking emails, and the internet being the main culprits), road rage, traffic fatigue, alcohol, medical marijuana, recreational marijuana (which was legalized in 2016), etc., and you have a perfect recipe for disaster.
Here are just some of the disastrous results (as provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention):
So what do you need to do if you, as a pedestrian, are a victim of a negligent driver? Call or have someone call the police to ensure that a thorough incident report is conducted at the scene, call or have someone call for emergency medical services so you can be evaluated for further care, and once you are in stable condition, call for attorney representation right away! An experienced attorney will seek to get the facts of your case as soon as possible in order to get your claim open and moving forward. An experienced attorney will know that they do not need to rely on the police report and that under most circumstances much of the process can be completed without having to reference a completed report. If liability is not an issue, an experienced attorney will be able to handle claims, issue victim statements, make a formal demand and seek settlement of the case even before the applicable law enforcement agency has wrapped up their investigation and review!
That is why you need the experience and knowledge of Venerable Injury Law on your side. Our attorneys have been dealing with the insurance companies for over a decade, and we know how to maximize your case in the shortest amount of time possible. In a recent case, Venerable was able to recover a seven figure settlement for a pedestrian victim, even though he ran into a crosswalk at a busy intersection on a red light! Our winning reputation makes insurance companies want to resolve cases before litigation, and we will use all our resources to do the same for you!