Pedestrian & Auto Accident Claims

As personal injury lawyers, pedestrian accidents make up part of our practice. Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable in collisions with motor vehicles, as they have nothing to protect them against the substantial weight of a car. As a result, they may suffer catastrophic injuries or death. Pedestrians make up over 50% of road-related deaths in Vancouver. In about half of pedestrian accidents, police have found the pedestrians to be primarily at fault – dispelling the notion that everything is caused by bad drivers.

Pedestrians who have been hit by a motor vehicle will generally be able to recover damages for pain and suffering, lost income, and out-of-pocket expenses thanks to insurance coverage. However, pedestrians who have been hit by cyclists can have substantially more difficulty recovering any money. Cyclists are not required to carry insurance like motor vehicle drivers; yet, a fast-moving bicycle can still injure or even kill pedestrians. Recently, an elderly pedestrian was struck by a cyclist in Stanley Park, and died of his injuries shortly after. It can add insult to injury to find out that you may not be able to recover any monetary compensation following an accident with a cyclist.

The best course of action pedestrians can take is to prevent accidents from occurring in the first place by taking steps to improve their own safety. When crossing a road, make sure to cross at an intersection, and preferably at a marked crosswalk; never jaywalk. Try to make eye contact with a driver who has stopped their vehicle to ensure they know of your presence before you cross in front of their car. Finally, remember that drivers are not perfect: they cannot see you well at night, especially if you are wearing dark clothing. Using your cellphone or iPod can distract you from hazards; stay aware of your surroundings, and take pro-active steps to reduce your risk of being hit by a car.

If you are struck by a car, make sure to get all information from the driver, including the driver’s name, insurance company, and license plate number. This information assists your lawyers in pursuing your ICBC or other auto insurance claim.

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