Our busy world offers one distraction after another. Both drivers and pedestrians have an obligation to remain vigilant and avoid behaviors which can cause harm to others sharing our roads and sidewalks.
If you’re involved in a collision with a pedestrian, knowing what to do ahead of time can help minimize your liability and ensure a smoother claims process.
First steps after a collision with a pedestrian
Safety always comes first. You might be horrified by what just happened, but it pays to keep your cool and be a helper. Check on anyone who is injured but avoid giving medical care such as rescue breathing or CPR. Help move uninjured people or other hazards out of the road, but don’t move anyone who is badly injured to prevent making their injuries worse.
Get help. Call 911 to get police and medical support on the way as soon as possible. Next call your insurance carrier, truthfully explain the situation and ask that they send a representative to assess the scene. If you might be violating the law, such as driving under the influence, you should also contact a local defense attorney for advice.
Don’t leave. Remember, it’s illegal to leave the scene of an accident, so play it smart by waiting until the police have said you can go.
Write it down. Note time of day and location, take photos of the scene and talk to witnesses for more details. Never say anything that can be used to hold you liable. Leave determining fault to the professionals and protect yourself by saying as little as possible.
Avoid an accident by driving defensively
Defensive driving is all about paying attention to your surroundings so you can head off hazards at the pass. Slow down, stay off distracting devices like mobile phones and pay attention to the people around you. If you’re surrounded by tourists, kids on skateboards, bicyclists and other vehicles, take extra precautions and go a little slower.
Because there are so many moving parts with regards to insurance coverage and liability, you should speak with a local auto accident attorney who can protect your rights and work with your insurance company to ensure the best outcome.