When a car hits a pedestrian, the collision often results in extensive injuries or death. Determining fault impacts who pays for medical bills and property damage.
Various factors determine who is at fault in the accident, and it is not always the driver.
When is a pedestrian at fault in an accident?
Iowa laws establish rules to keep pedestrians safe on the road. For example, pedestrians have the right-of-way on the sidewalk, when walking along the left side of the street if there are no sidewalks and inside marked crosswalks. However, if people decide to walk in the roadway in places other than allowed, an accident might be their fault. Some examples are:
- crossing at locations other than a crosswalk
- walking in prohibited areas
- crossing against traffic signals
- wearing hard-to-see clothing at night
When is a driver liable for hitting a pedestrian?
Since drivers must share the roads with pedestrians, they may be responsible for an accident if they do not yield to walkers. When drivers speed, run a red light, drive drunk or get distracted and hit a pedestrian, the drivers are at-fault.
How can people prevent pedestrian versus auto accidents?
Both drivers and pedestrians can take action to prevent accidents. Drivers should obey speed limits and traffic signals, focus on the road and not cell phones and avoid driving after drinking. Pedestrians can stay safe by walking on sidewalks, looking in both directions before entering the roadway and wearing bright clothing.
Safety is the responsibility of both drivers and pedestrians. Being alert and following traffic laws may prevent pedestrian injury and death.