Walking is a natural part of living. Not only do roughly 9 percent of households lack access to a vehicle, but the CDC recommends people walk at least 150 minutes per week to maintain their health. So, it’s not surprising that New Orleans is packed with pedestrians on their way to the gym, home, work, or one of New Orleans’ fantastic sights. In fact, roughly 5 percent of people in NO walk to work every day. There’s nothing better than a walk in the sunshine with the cool breeze hitting your face. But what happens when that walk turns into a nightmare? Every year, thousands of pedestrians are injured in car accidents. And this single moment can change the lives of both the driver and the pedestrian.
What Causes Pedestrian Accidents?
According to findings from the Governors Highway Safety Association, pedestrian accidents are at a 30-year-high. Every day, a pedestrian is involved in an automobile accident, and many are injured as a result. On Louisiana roadways, 1,143 people were injured last year — despite 2020 setting a record low in overall traffic. The truth is: pedestrian accidents are far too common in Louisiana, and these accidents can completely change a person’s life in an instant. But what’s causing all of these pedestrian accidents?
Here are the top 5 causes of pedestrian accidents in the state of Louisiana.
1. Distracted Driving
Each year, over 390 thousand drivers are injured due to distracted driving, and cell phone use alone leads to 1.6 million crashes annually. Distracted driving comes in many shapes and sizes, including:
- Talking to passengers
- Using onboard entertainment or nav systems
- Reading maps
- Checking yourself in the mirror
- Adjusting various vehicle components (e.g., seats, mirrors, etc.)
- Looking at outside distractions such as other wrecks, billboards, or funny license plates
- Helping children in the back seat
- Going through personal belongings
All of these distractions impede a driver’s ability to access the road, react to hazards, and visualize dangers. For example, the CDC estimates that taking your eyes off the road to read a text message takes an average of five seconds. If you’re traveling 55 mph, you will travel the length of a football field before you look at the road again. In fact, some studies suggest that one in four car accidents are a direct cause of texting. Unfortunately, despite 94 percent of drivers admitting that texting and driving is dangerous, 35 percent of them do it anyway. Believe it or not, distracted drivers are 6x more likely to cause an accident than those driving while intoxicated. Since 2005, the number of pedestrians killed by distracted driving has significantly increased, and it continues to increase each year. When drivers are distracted, they often fail to see pedestrians crossing — which can lead to collisions, injuries, and even death.
2. Driving While Intoxicated
Every 2 minutes, someone is injured in a drunk driving accident. Alcohol or drugs impair judgment, impact bodily functions, and decrease alertness. This goes for both drivers and pedestrians. Believe it or not, there are over 111 million self-reported episodes of intoxication while driving each year. But the average drunk driver will drive at least 80 times before getting caught. In fact, impaired driving is so prevalent that 2 in 3 people will be involved in a drunk driving accident in their lifetime.
When a pedestrian or driver is impaired, they often make poor decisions. If you were involved in a pedestrian-related accident and suspect drugs or alcohol contributed to the incident, contact a local attorney to discuss your situation.
3. Jaywalking & Dark Clothing
You should always use a crosswalk when crossing the street. Unfortunately, crosswalks aren’t always readily available, and research suggests that most people will only walk as far as 300 feet to reach a local crosswalk. Chances are, most drivers pay attention to crosswalks, but some fail to notice pedestrians jaywalking across the street. In addition, wearing dark clothing at nighttime can make someone difficult to spot. Most pedestrian-related accidents occur at non-intersections during the night.
The combination of jaywalking and dark clothing during the nighttime is particularly dangerous. Often, crosswalks are illuminated enough to help drivers spot pedestrians in the dark. Pedestrians crossing in non-intersection at night can be particularly difficult to spot — especially if they’re wearing clothing that further conceals them. It’s incredibly important that drivers always keep their eyes open for pedestrians. Certain situations (e.g., construction, broken signage, damaged crosswalk signals, etc.) can force pedestrians to cross in awkward places. Always be observant.
The faster a vehicle is going, the less control that driver has over the vehicle. According to the CDC, speeding minimizes vehicle control, reduces the effectiveness of protective equipment, increases stopping distance, and increases the severity of accidents. Speeding is particularly dangerous around intersections. Braking distance is 16 times further for vehicles traveling 80 mph than vehicles traveling 20 mph. Not only does speeding make it more difficult to actually perceive dangers, but the vehicle itself will take longer to come to a complete stop. Never speed around intersections.
5. Poor Weather
Rainy days and ice storms can impede vehicle effectiveness. Twenty-one percent of all vehicle accidents are a result of bad weather, and weather-related driving accidents injure hundreds of thousands of individuals annually. Adverse weather (e.g., snow, fog, wind, rain, sleet, etc.) also causes environmental issues (e.g., snowy roads, wet pavement, etc.) that double the dangers of driving. Both drivers and pedestrians should be extra alert during poor weather. It only takes a locked pair of brakes to cause a serious incident.
Were You Involved in a Pedestrian Accident?
Our experienced team at AKD has dealt with various car accident cases, from Louisiana car accidents to traumatic brain injuries and even Uber-related injuries. We have also successfully claimed over 3 million dollars for our clients in different insurance claims. Check out our fun corner for some light-hearted content to lift your spirits during these tough times.
Car accidents involving pedestrians are some of the most dangerous types of accidents on the roadway. Unfortunately, they’re far too common, and they can disrupt your life. Many victims of pedestrian accidents deal with physical injuries and mental health problems. Hospital bills, lost work time, and mental health bills can cause a significant amount of stress in your life. You may deserve compensation. At AKD, we specialize in helping victims of car accidents get the compensation they deserve. Contact us online or at 504-200-0000 for a free consultation.
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In 2003, after being dissatisfied with the quality of legal care for victims of car accidents, Roderick ‘Rico’ Alvendia sought to establish a new firm focused on providing high-quality legal services to aid injured victims and their families. J. Bart Kelly, sharing Rico’s passion for upholding justice, joined the firm later that year, and established a partnership.
They helped me with every need possible. The back issues I had could have been much worse if they didn’t step in and help me. Bart, Megan, and all the people that work for this legal team are amazing. I would recommend them to anyone. Thank you all for helping me each step of the way. I can’t thank these people enough.
- T. Gibson-Warren
I want to thank the whole team for all your help and persistence with my settlement. I truly appreciate.
- A. Alfortish
Great experiences every time I need you guys. I always recommend your firm.
- W. Young
Bart and his team were wonderful to work with. It was clear that their vision and determination to fight for our case, is why we were able to reach a settlement, where my previous attorney was not.
- C. Perez
Bart Kelly and his legal team reevaluated my case after another attorney backed away from a legal challenge, I just want to say Thank You to mr kelly and his team for the hard work and dedication to my case to make it successful . Thank You
- N. Gex
Attorney Kelly is an impeccable attorney. He has represented me extremely well. I was very, very, very pleased with the outcome of my settlement. He’s highly recommended … to give assistance to anyone. I thank him for his services and I’m super elated over the way he handled the case. He is a phenomenal lawyer.
- S. Spears
I’ve learned the importance of having good coverage insurance, thanks to Mr. Kelly explaining everything to me. We do not hope or wait for accidents, but rest assured that I will call Mr. Kelly again if I need his services. Thank you.
- Ann Zimmer
Being represented by Mr. Kelly and his legal team was a very awesome experience. They were very patient and they worked really hard in resolving my case. I would most definitely refer them to all my friends and associates. Thank you very much.
- Nathaniel Bonney
I am very grateful for Mr. Bart’s assistance. He was very professional and fair. I never felt like a client with him. I always felt like a close friend. Also, I would like to thank everyone in the office for being friendly, kind, and for helping me.
- Glac Mantuso
Just want to say thanks a lot because I received way more than I expected. You guys did a wonderful job of getting the max for myself and my family. Everyone I met or spoke to on the phone was really professional and nice. Once again, thanks a lot.
- Jessica Quinn
J. Bart Kelly is the best attorney I have ever met. He is intelligent, caring, understanding, and knows how to protect his clients. I love his strong take-charge attitude to fight for what is right.
- Teri Haas
My lawyer took the time to explain everything in a clear and concise manner. I’ve been treated fairly and with the utmost respect. I am very appreciative of all of the staff at AKD for their services.
- James Barber
I am grateful for the way that my case was handled. Thanks.
- Darryl Hill
Thanks to Bart and Meg. Fantastic group of people and team. Love you guys.
- Claudine Hope
I was involved in a terrible accident and had a lot of serious injuries. I was so happy that Bart (and his team, including his nurse paralegal) was my attorney. The results were much more than expected as far as the settlement. Thanks.
- Karen Bourgeois
I received exceptional service from the law office of Bart Kelly. He is a great attorney who cares about what you are going through, and I am very pleased with the outcome.
- Melissa Sanchez